There's one thing that can dramatically reduce your risks of heart disease - and it's the one thing that doctors never mention: be happy, and retain a positive outlook. A positive attitude can have a big effect on the health of your heart, and could even halve your chances of suffering heart problems, and even a heart attack, over a 10-year period. Researchers from Columbia University Medical Centre in New York confirmed what we all instinctively know when they tracked the lives of 1,739 adult volunteers - 862 men and 877 women - over the 10 years. They wanted to gauge the impact of a positive attitude on heart health compared to a generally depressive view of life. In that time, there were 145 cases of fatal and non-fatal heart attacks, and when they eliminated all other factors, the researchers discovered that the volunteers with a generally depressed outlook were twice as likely as their happy counterparts to succumb to heart disease. (Source: European Heart Journal, 2010; published February 17, 2010 online, doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehp603).