A woman’s chance of dying from a heart attack increases by 18% for each 10 beat per minutes rise in her resting heart rate up to the age of 70, a study suggests.
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Regular exercise can minimise the impact of a higher resting heart rate, said the study published online ahead of print in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
The higher the resting heart rate, the higher the risk of a cardiovascular disease death, especially from heart attacks and angina.
Those with a resting heart rate of 101bpm were 42% more likely to die and those younger than 70 were more than twice as likely to die of a heart attack.
Women who reported higher levels of physical activity had a lower risk of dying from heart attacks and angina (known as ischaemic heart disease), regardless of their resting heart rate.
The Norwegian authors studied nearly 50,000 healthy adults aged 20 and above, whose cardiovascular health was tracked for an average of 18 years from 1984-86 up to the end of 2004.