Heart Disease and HIV- What to Do?

Some HIV+ people have emailed me worried about this report:

Heart Attacks Found Early and Frequently in HIV Positive People

Calculate your 5 year estimated cardiovascular risk: D-A-D Cardiovascular Risk Equation for HIV+ People

My suggestions to minimize heart disease (not in any other of importance):
1- Do not smoke
2- Keep your cholesterol and triglycerides within normal ranges (with exercise, diet, HIV medication change, fish oils, even medications)
3- Exercise 4 times a week for an hour
4- Take a baby aspirin every day (81 mg)
5- Take 200 mg of Coenzyme Q-10 and 2000 mg of carnitine per day
6- Get a stress test every two years 
7- Have one to two glasses a day of red wine, no more.
8- Controversial topic: avoid abacavir (Ziagen, Epzicom), D4T, AZT, Crixivan.
9- Control your HIV to under 50 copies all the time
10- Manage stress: meditate, take a hobby, do pleasurable things every day, let go of what you cannot control, etc
11- Avoid street drugs, except moderate pot for pain or appetite.
12- Get your blood pressure under control 
13- Keep your weight down
14- Keep your gums healthy
15- Eat cold water fish (salmon, sardines, etc) at least once a week
16- Have a hand full of nuts once a day
17- Keep your testosterone and thyroid hormones within healthy ranges.
18- Know the symptoms of a heart attack and call 911 immediately if you ever have them. Do not deny them or “sleep them off”.  Do not have a friend take you to the hospital. Call 911 and paramedics will pre-treat you right when they are driving you to the hospital. Read about symptoms: Symptoms of a heart attack

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