My friend James Larsen sent me a article from the HealthDay website which reports that where you live may have an impact on the chance of having a heart attack. Coming from the February 16th, 2007 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, researchers looking at the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System found that living in West Virginia had a three-fold higher rate of heart attacks than living in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Other findings included:
- Men had higher rates of coronary heart disease and non-fatal heart attack and angina than women (8.2 percent vs. 5 percent).
- Asians had the lowest rates of heart disease (4.7 percent), while American Indians/Alaska Natives had the highest rates (11.2 percent).
- People with less than 12 years of education had a higher heart attack rate than those with a college degree.
- The states with the highest heart attack rate were – Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia.
- The states with the lowest heart attack rate were – , District of Columbia, Hawaii, Montana, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Utah, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
- People with type 2 diabetes, smokers, hypertension, were physically inactive or obese were also more likely to have a heart attack.
While not earth shattering news, hopefully this data will help public health officials focus on heart health issues in those states with the highest incidence. Another real good idea to lower someones risk is to get checked out by you physician or if you are up to it, get a cardiovascular risk assessment done through Direct Lab Services. Ask them for the LabAssist Interpretive report as well to get the most information possible. Bottom line though, take an active role in your health and you’ll live a happier and healthier life.