Out-of-Shape Men More Prone to Heart Diseases

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Heart diseases are generally related to many factors that predispose everyone on acquiring it. However, the activities that we go through every single day of our lives contributes to heart problem development. One of which is high physical work demands that can lead to an increased risk of death from ischemic heart disease (IHD). Men who aren’t physically fit are the people at risks of ischemic heart disease according to the study in the November Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM).

A condition characterized by reduced blood circulation (ischemia) to the heart is known as   ischemic heart disease (IHD), or myocardial ischemia. The decrease in blood supply in the heart tissue is Oftenly brought about by is coronary artery disease (atherosclerosis of the coronary arteries). Its risk increases with age, smoking, hypercholesterolaemia (high cholesterol levels), diabetes, and hypertension (high blood pressure), and is more common in men and those who have close relatives with ischemic heart disease. Common manifestations of this condition is angina (chest pain on exertion) and decrease exercise tolerance.

The new research, led by Andreas Holtermann, PhD, of Bispebjerg University Hospital, Copenhagen states that the increase in risk is not explained by the higher rates of heavy work and health risk factors among men at lower socioeconomic levels. On the other hand, a previous study of 5,250 Danish men found an increased risk of death from IHD (such as heart attack) in men with high physical work demands and low physical fitness. However, social class was a potential confounding factor: men at lower socioeconomic levels are more likely to have jobs involving heavy work. They also have higher rates of lifestyle risk factors, such as smoking and obesity. To have an answer with the vague results, the researchers analyzed 2,707 men in the lower socioeconomic levels. Thirty percent of men in this group had high physical work demands, compared to 3.5 percent for those at higher socioeconomic levels. The long-term risk of death from IHD was 14 percent for men in the lower social classes, compared to about nine percent in the higher social classes. Later on, it was found out that men with low fitness and high physical work demands were nearly three times more likely to die from IHD, compared to those with low work demands.

Thus socioeconomic factors don’t seem to explain the link between heavy labor and IHD risk. “These observations indicate that physical fitness is a protector of or a risk modifier among men exposed to high physical loads on their cardiovascular system,” Dr Holterman and coauthors write. The fact that this research offers is by maintaining physically fit body, chances of having heart disease can be prevented even men are faced with high physical demands.



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