Fuhrman, who just published his sixth New York Times bestselling book, “The End of Heart Disease: The Eat to Live Plan to Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease,” also makes a strong case that prescription drugs and surgery are not the only way to prevent or deal with heart disease.

Even extra exercise doesn’t always improve cardiac health as much as we think it should. In his opinion, if people followed a nutrient-rich diet they can experience near-reversal of heart disease – something that neither surgery nor drugs can claim.

 “People think that meds make them OK,” he says “But their risk continues to get worse. My contention is that if people had informed consent, and if they understood the risks of meds and surgery, millions would embrace diet change.”

What’s more, Fuhrman maintains that more than 95 percent of heart-disease related deaths are preventable – “and that is a conservative estimate,” he adds.

People who smoke, or are involved in other risky behaviors like a poor diet, should do so with the full knowledge of risks, he adds.

For instance, calcium channel blockers for high blood pressure and statins both increase the risk of breast cancer. Once you have a stent in your heart, you are at greater risk of hemorrhagic stroke.

“It’s like a Band-Aid,” he says. “This would be OK if people were given all the options; otherwise we are imposing these things on people.”