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UK men at heightened risk of increased heart age

Monday 4th September 2017
Many people in the UK have a heart age that exceeds their actual age, with men particularly at risk, according to a new study. Image credit: BrianAJackson via iStock
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Men in the UK are more likely than women to have a heart age that exceeds their actual age, according to a new report.

Public Health England has published an analysis of 1.2 million results generated by its 
Heart Age Test online assessment tool, revealing that 12 per cent have a heart age at least ten years older than them.

It was also shown that 64 per cent of those with a heart ten years older than their actual age are male, with around one in ten men aged 50 in this category. This is a cause for major concern, as cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death amongst men, and the second highest cause of death in women.

The Heart Age Test was launched by Public Health England in February 2015, allowing anyone over the age of 30 to input basic physical and lifestyle-related information to receive an immediate estimation of their heart age.

A new version of the test is now being introduced that refers users to apps, advice and resources to help them eat and drink better, get active, and quit smoking to improve their heart health, while also directing users to their nearest blood pressure station if they do not know theirs.

Associate professor Jamie Waterall, lead for cardiovascular disease prevention at Public Health England, said: "We should all aim for our heart age to be the same as our real age - addressing our risk of heart disease and stroke should not be left until we are older.

"The Heart Age Test is really important, as it gives an immediate idea of heart attack and stroke risk, with no doctor's appointment needed."

Incidence of cardiovascular disease has declined in recent years, but around 7,400 people still die each month from heart disease or stroke, meaning further preventative action is needed.

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