Aircraft noise could lead to heart disease

By Kelsey Meany • Published: December 3rd, 2013
Category: Health in a Heartbeat

As if the thought of inching your way through crowded airports during the December holidays with your family in tow weren’t enough to make you feel stressed out, researchers have uncovered a new link between heart disease … and airplane noise.

According to studies published by both U.S. and U.K. researchers, people who live close to an airport and are exposed to the constant roar of planes face an increased risk of heart disease. The researchers say the findings should be factored into future planning of new airports and runways.

People living within the range of England’s Heathrow airport at the highest exposure areas were 10 to 20 percent more likely to go to the hospital for stroke, coronary heart disease and cardiovascular disease.

Although the researchers found a significant link between the exposure to airplane noise and heart health, they cannot yet say that airplane noise actually causes the disease. More studies are needed to determine that.

Other risk factors for heart disease include age, sex, family history, smoking and poor diet. Other factors like high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, obesity and stress can play a major role as well.

A combination of these risk factors can lead to heart failure, heart attack, stroke, aneurysm and sudden cardiac arrest, among many other issues involving the heart.

But with a healthy diet and exercise the risk of heart disease can be lowered. Doctors recommend getting at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day and eating a low-fat, low-sodium diet to reduce the risk of arteries becoming clogged. Quitting smoking and cutting back on drinking can also aid in keeping your heart as happy and healthy as possible.