Hearts live longer with hard water

IT MAY cut the life of your kettle or wreck your washing machine but hard water can actually be good for your heart.According to a new study, despite the fact that hard water can have a nasty effect on household items by clogging them up with limescale, it seems the heart might be quite partial to what it has to offer.

IT MAY cut the life of your kettle or wreck your washing machine but hard water can actually be good for your heart.

According to a new study, despite the fact that hard water can have a nasty effect on household items by clogging them up with limescale, it seems the heart might be quite partial to what it has to offer.

So people living in Suffolk may have a greater protection against heart disease than those who live in soft water areas.

The Ipswich area is considered to be a very hard water area and the levels are different across the region.

So while some people swear by the benefits of buying bottled mineral water, maybe the humble tap water is not so bad after all.

A study in Finland looked at water content in different areas alongside national data on almost 19,000 men who had suffered a heart attack.

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They found that for every one unit increase in water hardness there was a corresponding one per cent decrease in the risk of having a heart attack.

The team from the Geographical Survey of Finland in Kupio also found that for every one mg of flouride in household drinking water there was a three per cent decrease in heart attack risk.

Hard water is high in minerals, which are beneficial to health such as calcium and magnesium.

A spokeswoman for Anglian Water said that the water in the region was taken from underground sources which meant it had to come through hard, chalky ground which is full of the vitamins.

The body needs an adequate intake of calcium every day and can be found in foods such as dairy products, beans, eggs, nuts, cauliflower and spinach.

The authors of the study, which was published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health said: "The large geographical variation and changes in the incident of heart attacks in Finland cannot be explained by individual lifestyle or genetic factors alone.

"Environmental exposures must also contribute to the development of the disease."

They added that common risk factors and socio-economic status provided only a partial explanation for higher heart disease risk in some areas.

N What do you think? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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