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Because both of my parents had heart disease, I know I have “bad” genes. Is there anything I can do to protect myself?


There are no "good" or "bad" genes. Most human diseases, especially common diseases such as heart disease, result from the interaction of genes with environmental and behavioral risk factors, both of which can be changed. The best disease prevention strategy for anyone, especially for people with an inherited risk, includes reducing risky behaviors (such as smoking), as well as increasing healthy behaviors (such as regular exercise).

Last updated: 04/21/2008