What Your Heart Age Says About Your Risk of Heart Attack and Stroke

What Your Heart Age Says About Your Risk of Heart Attack and Stroke
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A new test has been developed that calculates your heart age and your subsequent risk of heart attack and stroke. [1]

The Heart Age Test asks adults over 30 to answer a series of questions about their physical lifestyle and health. If the test determines that your “heart age” is older than your actual age, it means you have a greater risk of suffering from one of these cardiovascular events.

I took the test, and it told me how old I could expect to live without having a heart attack or stroke.

According to Public Health England, the test has been completed more than 1.9 million times. Sadly, there are a lot of unhealthy people out there:

  • 4 out of 5 people (78%) have recorded a higher heart age than their actual age.
  • More than 1/3 had a heart age more than 5 years older than their real age.
  • 14% of test-takers had a heart age more than 10 years older than their actual age.

However, The Heart Age Test is not a diagnostic test. It can’t tell you if you’re headed for a heart attack or stroke, but it can give you insight into whether or not you need to make some lifestyle changes. [2]

CDC: 3 out of 4 Americans’ Hearts are Older than Their Chronological Age

The simple test has the potential to save millions of lives.

Juliet Bouverie, chief executive at the Stroke Association, said:

“We believe that across the U.K. there are around 6 million people who are undiagnosed and untreated for high blood pressure or atrial fibrillation, 2 of the biggest risk factors for stroke.

However, treatment for these conditions can significantly reduce your risk of stroke and the devastation it causes.”

It’s not as easy to fight genes, but for many people, many heart risk factors are modifiable, including obesity, lack of physical activity, and high blood pressure.

Start Improving Your Heart Health Now

  • Quit smoking. A year after kicking the habit, your risk for heart disease falls to about 50% that of a smoker’s.
  • Get active. Getting about 150 minutes of aerobic exercise a week, such as cycling or brisk walking, can lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Manage your weight
  • Eat more fiber
  • Reduce your saturated fat intake
  • Eat 5 servings of fruit or vegetables per day. Increasing the amount of produce you eat from 3 to 5 servings can lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Cut down on salt
  • Eat fish
  • Drink less alcohol
  • Read the labels on foods and drinks

Read: Under New Guidelines, Millions More Americans Have High Blood Pressure

Simon Gillespie, chief executive of the British Heart Foundation, said: [1]

“Our message today is that it’s never too late to change. Take the test, and if you are concerned by the age of your heart, make an appointment to see your GP.”


[1] ChronicleLive

[2] BBC News