‘I’m a doctor – here are 10 rules to prevent a heart attack’

A heart attack is a life-threatening medical emergency that occurs when the supply of blood to the heart is cut off. This is often caused by a blood clot.

This lack of blood to the heart is extremely damaging to the organ and can even prove fatal.

Like all medical issues, preventing a heart attack is always better than having to treat someone afterwards. With this in mind one expert took to YouTube to explain how to do so.

Speaking to his more than one million subscribers, Doctor Mike Hansen shared his “10 rules” to avoid a heart attack.

He acknowledged some factors that contribute to a heart attack are beyond our control, such as genetics and age. But by following these steps you can significantly reduce your risk.

These 10 rules are:

  • Don’t do cocaine
  • Don’t smoke cigarettes
  • Reduce stress
  • Exercise regularly
  • Intermittent fasting
  • Eat foods with plenty of omega-3s
  • Eat plenty of vitamins and mineral
  • Minimise eating foods with saturated fat
  • Avoid foods with added sugar or refined carbohydrates
  • Eat plenty of fibre.


Dr Hansen said: “Cocaine: don’t do it, because cocaine is a hell of a drug.”

The American Heart Association notes that cocaine is the “perfect heart attack drug”.

It warns that it can cause:

  • Angina and reduced blood flow to the heart
  • Higher blood pressure, stiffer arteries and thicker heart muscle walls
  • Sharp rise in heart rate and an increased need for oxygen in heart muscle
  • Damage to cardiac tissue
  • Heart infections.


Dr Hansen implored viewers to give up smoking.

“The risk for a heart attack can be decreased by 65 percent after quitting smoking,” he said.


Many experts have warned of the impact of stress on heart health.

To do so Dr Hansen recommended:

  • Outdoor activities like going for a walk or going for a hike
  • Meditation
  • Getting good sleep
  • Keeping a journal
  • Spending time with friends and family.


“Ideally” you should be exercising for at least 150 minutes a week, he said.

Dr Hansen added: “Even getting up and going for a walk is much better than doing nothing.”

Intermittent fasting

This technique gives you the “same benefits as exercise” he said.

“So the way I see it, why not do both now?” he continued.

“The most practical way of doing intermittent fasting and what I do is time restricted eating or time-restricted feeding, for example, I’ll eat in an eight hour window and then I’ll fast for 16 hours.”


The main thing when it comes to your diet is cutting out processed foods, according to Dr Hansen.

This is to prevent insulin resistance, inflammation and oxidative stress.

Dr Hansen said: “But to get a little more specific number five on this list entails eating foods with plenty of omega-3s, things like salmon, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds and walnuts are all great sources.

“Now you want at least a gram or two of omega-3s every day.”

Vitamins and minerals

He said: “Eat foods with plenty of vitamins and minerals and antioxidants. That’s why vegetables and whole intact grains can’t be underestimated, also seeds and nuts.”

Saturated fat

You should “minimise” the amount of saturated fat you eat to protect your heart.

Dr Hansen said: “Especially when it’s coming from beef and pork, especially if they’re processed meats like pepperoni, bacon and the like.”

Added sugar or refined carbohydrates

These are also commonly found in processed foods and should be avoided.

“Eating less than 25 grams of added sugar per day is probably the most important thing that
you can do to improve your overall health and this includes reducing your risk of a heart attack,” he said.


However, eating plenty of soluble and insoluble fibre “might be just as important if not more important” when it comes to keeping your heart healthy.

Dr Hansen added: “Most of us consume 10 to 15 grams of fibre per day when we should be getting at least 25 to 30 per day.”

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