24hrs of Heart Rate May Predict Young Women's Future Heart Health
Resting heart rate is generally considered a independent factor in predicting heart disease. Now, new research from Drs Cynthia Cheng and Constantine Daskalakis (Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA) points to the 24 hour read--that is a 24hr heart rate monitor was a better predictor of future cardiovascular conditions, in young patients with no current heart health symptoms such as high blood pressure. This is important research because it shows that despite a lack of symptoms, we may have tools to demonstrate a need for primary prevention.
We need to be starting much younger—when women are in their 20s, rather than their 40s and 50s when they’ve already developed early signs of heart disease,” said Dr. Katie Berlacher, an assistant professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and a cardiologist at Magee-Womens Hospital at the University of Pittsburgh. Berlacher is unaffiliated with the new study. “One of the impressive things is that you could decrease the risk of heart disease by 50 to 70 percent if women complied with heathy recommendations.”
"24-hour ambulatory heart rate and blood-pressure monitoring can help determine whether a particular younger, at-risk patient has constantly elevated blood pressure (even if it is borderline), blood pressure that is elevated only in the office, or a persistently elevated heart rate—"all markers that you should pay more attention to, to prevent [potential hypertension, heart attack, or stroke] down the line," Cheng told heartwire from Medscape. "Either way, you're going to try to get these people to exercise more, eat less salt, [and eat a healthy diet].”
The 6 Healthy Habits to Prevent Heart Disease
- No smoking!
- Maintain a normal BMI of less than 30
- 2.5 hrs of physical activity per week
- One alcoholic drink maximum per day
- A daily healthy diet of dairy, fruits, veggies, lean meats and whole grains
- 7 or fewer hours of TV a week