Health Watch — Heart Disease: Women's Habits

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about heart disease, which is the leading cause of death. Previously, we discussed how estrogen protects women from heart disease before menopause. But there are still lifestyle factors that influence heart disease risk, and researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found that women are less likely than men to make lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking or exercising more – especially if they have a family history of heart disease.    

Dr. Amit Khera, a UT Southwestern cardiologist, says young women tend to underestimate their heart disease risk. While heart disease doesn’t often hit younger women, the consequences tend to be more severe when it does. Young women also influence their risk later in life with lifestyle choices they make when they’re younger.

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November 2007

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