Heart disease death rate doubles every five years

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

Mon, Oct 21, 2013 - Page 3

The death rate from heart disease in women doubles every five years after menopause, the Health Promotion Administration says.

Statistics show that heart disease is the second-leading cause of death for women, claiming the lives of 6,869 women in Taiwan last year.

The administration noted that the heart disease death rate among postmenopausal women doubles every five years, and warned post-menopausal women to be aware of the risk of developing heart disease and to keep track of their weight, blood pressure, blood sugar and blood lipid levels.

An administration health survey found that while blood pressure, blood sugar levels and blood lipid levels for women aged under 50 are generally lower than those of their male counterparts, the situation is reversed among the over 50s.

The same survey also showed that more than 50 percent of women aged 50 and over have a waist circumference measuring more than 80cm, indicating internal fat deposits, which increases rapidly with age.

More than half also have a BMI of 24 or more, indicating that they are overweight or obese.

The agency cautioned that people with hypertension, hyperglycemia and hyperlipidemia in the health survey were found in a five-year follow-up to be 1.9, 1.5 and 1.8 times more likely to develop heart disease than those without the “three highs.”

Also, women with a waist size exceeding 80cm, or men with one more than 90cm, are at a 1.5-times greater risk of developing heart disease.

Those with a BMI of 24 or more have a 1.4-time greater risk.

Since post-menopausal women are more likely to be affected with the “three highs” than their male peers and tend to have greater waist size and BMI, they are a high-risk group for cardiovascular disease, the administration said.

It advised these women to watch their weight and pay attention to the “three highs.”