On the occasion of Heart Day, a new survey published highlights a health fact that concerns us all: women are still too little aware of heart health, compared to men.
On the occasion of Heart Day, Organon, a laboratory specializing in women’s health, and OpinionWay reveal a study on the level of knowledge of French people on the risk factors linked to cardiovascular diseases. Result: women are too little informed to be sufficiently protected.
Cardiovascular diseases: only 58% of women consider themselves well taken care of
While knowledge of risk factors for cardiovascular health is mainly through the general practitioner, or even the cardiologist, strong disparities in perception and awareness between women and men still exist:
- Among people over 60, only 64% of women have already had one or more interviews regarding their cardiovascular health compared to 82% of men;
- Among 18–25 year olds, 63% of women have never had a discussion regarding their cardiovascular health compared to 40% of men of the same age;
- Nearly half (47%) of women compared to 1/3 of men (34%) say they have never had a discussion regarding their cardiovascular health;
- Ultimately, 72% of men say they are well taken care of to prevent cardiovascular diseases compared to only 58% of women.
Risk factors are also unequally known among women: only 32% of them think, for example, that taking oral contraception has a strong impact on their cardiovascular risk and more than a quarter (26%) believe that pregnancy has no impact on their cardiovascular health.
Heart health concerns both men and women
This difference in perception and treatment which tends to disappear between men and women is based on several real facts, reminds us Dr Gérald Kierzek, medical director of TipsForWomens.
“What is true is that there are still recent studies which show that cardiovascular diseases are still labeled or perceived as diseases of men over 50, overweight, who smoke or drink. But it’s wrong ! Today, cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death among women! Not only do they develop other types of cardiovascular diseases than men and other symptoms, but they have also adopted bad male habits, including new risk factors such as smoking.”
As for care, however, the trend is fortunately changing, our expert confirms.There have long been differences in care, because women were believed to be more protected than men. The various actions carried out in cardiovascular prevention, however, show that this is being smoothed out and erased.”
So if you have any doubts, questions or persistent symptoms that concern you, don’t hesitate to ask your general practitioner, your gynecologist or even a cardiologist.
World Heart Day: the heart speaks better at night!
As part of a large international study, Withings, leader in connected health, analyzed the nighttime heart rate (NHR) of more than 160,000 Withings users around the world, aged 18 to 70, for one year, from 2022 to 2023.
Result: people who take more than 10,000 steps per day have a nighttime heart rate (NHR) that is 4.74 beats per minute lower on average than people who take fewer than 5,000 steps. This analysis is important because if a high heart rate during the day is already a sign of risk, a high nighttime heart rate is an increased indicator of risk of cardiovascular disease.
According to Professor Escourrou, head of the Sleep Laboratory at the Antoine-Béclère hospital (Paris-Sud University Hospitals, AP-HP): “Sleep is a privileged “window” on the functioning of our autonomous control system of the heart without the disturbances caused by stimulation from the daytime environment. It provides access to the basal level of our cardiovascular system in undisturbed conditions.”
This study once again confirms that regular physical exercise helps reduce nighttime heart rate and the risk of cardiovascular disease.