Castelli loves data. Ask him almost any question at all, and
the answer will likely involve a research paper published
sometime within the last century. Just the man you'd want
to run the world's longest-running epidemiological study.
Just the man you'd want to tell you how to change your lifestyle
for the better.
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Framingham. . . to Framingham
gift of the people of Framingham is that they taught us
the risk factors"
William Castelli became the third director of the now famous
Framingham Heart Study in 1979, having served there since
1965. The well-known study began in 1948, when the federal
government wondered what was killing scores of seemingly healthy
men in their 50's and 60's. Now, more than 50 years, 1,000
research papers and $43 million later, the long-running study
has shed much light on the risk factors that cause heart disease.
In fact, scientists at the heart study coined the phrase "risk
factor." Today we're all aware of them: obesity, smoking,
high fat diet, high blood pressure, and diabetes to name a
directed the Framingham Heart Study for over 26 years.
though the study has made it very clear what people need to
do to prevent heart disease, life in 20th century America
makes healthful behavior difficult.
in China and India can't get this disease," says Castelli.
"Americans are the kings of sloth and gluttony. We engineered
all the physical activity right out of our lives." "
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