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British Heart Foundation
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Hi everyone,

I am new to HealthUnlocked.

I was diagnosed with heart disease in the 1990s, when I was in my 30s. Up to that point I was physically very fit. I caught a virus one Christmas and it all went rapidly downhill from there. I had quadruple bypass surgery in 1997, aged 41. I was told at the time that I would be back in for some more bypasses. I haven't been - evidence that I try to look after myself.

My BP has been high for a while. This Christmas I had an occlusion in my left eye. I lost the sight in the eye but it does seem to be returning, slowly. Test have shown that the Carotid Artery in the left side of my chest is blocked.

When I went back to work I monitored my BP, with collaboration between me, my employer and my GP. My BP was 190+/90+. We all agreed that retirement was my best option. So, I am now retired. My eldest daughter pointed me at a film called "What The Health". I watched it and became inspired. I bought a book called "How Not To Die" and the associated cookbook. It has chapters entitled "How Not To Die Of Heart Disease" and "How Not To Die of High Blood Pressure". I am following that advice at the moment to see how it goes. Has anyone else read it or acted upon it?

6 Replies

HI Jimmy

welcome to the forum, sorry to hear of your recent issue, hopefully a happy retirement is in order.

Heard of both, my youngest is a vegan and has recommended that to me, not something I have taken up as yet but never say never.


1 like

Hello Jimmy

A little surprised that medication didn't reduce your BP !! Is it now under control ?


Frank W


The last time I was on meds for my BP I stopped taking them all after falling asleep while driving on the M6. From the outside lane I ended up on the grass at the side. I didn't seem to get the benefits of the meds, just the side effects.

I am on meds I haven't had before and do not seem to be getting any side effects. I think that my improved BP, heart rate, physical fitness, etc. have all improved (at least in part) because of my weight loss. When I had flu at Xmas (along with having the occlusion in my eye and sinusitis) I lost about a stone.

I want to get off all the meds so I am going to monitor my BP and, if it goes too low, reduce them gradually, consulting with doctors all the way.


Hello Jimmy,

Sorry to hear about your recent issues. Hopefully the eye will return to normal and your BP will be brought under control.

I am a similar age, but was only diagnosed with heart disease just over three years ago - aortic stenosis and narrowed arteries. Although considered 'significant', nothing has yet been done. I go for an ultrasound every six months.

Since the diagnosis I have made changes to my diet. I was already eating a lot of vegetarian meals, but started to include vegan meals into my diet.

I recently bought both of the books you mentioned, and have found them to be very interesting. Thankfully, my wife has no problem with the vegan meals as long as I do the cooking!

If you haven't already tried any of the recipes, I would recommend that you do. They are quite straightforward once you have the many, many spices!

As I am now also retired I have made more of an effort to improve my fitness, and now go to the gym four times a week.

So far so good, but sooner or later one of the tests will show that something needs to be done. Hopefully I'll be well prepared when the time comes!

I'm now going to search for "What The Health"!




We are in our 4th week of making all our meals out of the cookbook. We even invented "Superstew". It is made of of all the best foods in each category:

2 onions

4 cloves garlic

1kg bag frozen broccoli

1kg bag frozen mixed veg - cauliflower, carrots, peas,

1 mugful lentils

400g kidney beans,

400g chickpeas

tbsps miso to taste

1 heaped tsp turmeric

1 heaped tsp oregano

1 heaped tsp basil,

3 tbsp savoury spice blend (from the book) you could use salt

2 tbsp ground linseeds

500ml vegetable broth(from the book)

1.7l water (or to required consistency)

Chuck it all in a very large pan and cook it for half an hour. Or use a slow cooker.

Makes 10 servings.


Will add to the cookbook, thanks!


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