Dick Cheney has been working long days and eating spicy foods in top Washington restaurants within days of a heart attack, but he insists he is following his doctors' orders. Mr Cheney, Republican vice-presidential hopeful to George W. Bush, has been hitting America's talk show circuit to ease fears that he is pushing himself too hard, saying his workload was 'perfectly appropriate'. 'I'm here based on the strong recommendations of my doctors,' Mr Cheney said on Meet the Press . 'They would never advise me to proceed as I am if there was any doubt about my capacity to do the job.' The 59-year-old's health has been the subject of deepening scrutiny since he checked himself into a Washington hospital with chest-pains two weeks ago. Doctors confirmed he had suffered a heart attack - his fourth - but Mr Cheney checked himself out within two days, going back last week for more tests. He has since started to lead Mr Bush's transition efforts and is currently taking a much higher profile than the Texas Governor following their declaration of victory a week ago. One item in the Washington Post's gossip column last week noted with alarm that he had been spied tucking with gusto into a jambalaya - a rich Louisiana rice stew laced with pork fat and spices and hardly known as diet fare. The portly former Defence Secretary has insisted he was now under much less stress than at other moments in his career. Mr Cheney suffered his first heart attack aged 37 following a spell in the White House as Chief of Staff under former President Gerald Ford. He under-went a triple bypass after his third heart attack 12 years ago. After his latest attack, tests discovered an artery was 90 per cent blocked. A tiny wire device, known as a stent, was inserted to force the walls back open. 'According to the doctors, I'm stronger and healthier than I was six months ago, because we've gone in and done that procedure,' Mr Cheney said. 'If I had any doubts about that, or if they expressed any doubts or reservations about my capacity to do the job, I would not do it.' One of America's top cardiologists, however, has warned that Mr Cheney faces further trouble unless he loses weight and exercises more than his light twice-a-week regime.