High resting heart rate could mean early death
Your resting heart rate can be an indicator of your overall health and fitness level--between 60 and 100 beats per minute is considered normal. And now research suggests that if your resting heart rate is higher than that, you could be at risk for early death, even if you’re otherwise healthy.
The Copenhagen Male Study was set up in 1971 to monitor the cardiovascular health of middle-aged men at 14 large companies in the Danish capital. About 3,000 men participated. Doctors evaluated them at the start of the study, then re-evaluated the men 15 years later, checking their heart and behavioral health. In 2001, the study again followed up to see which men were still alive--nearly 40 percent had died by that time.
The researchers found that a high resting heart rate was associated with lower levels of physical fitness, higher blood pressure and weight, and higher levels of fat circulating in the blood. However, even generally healthy men who had higher resting heart rates were at a higher risk of early death, according to the research.
A resting heart rate between 51 and 80 beats per minute was associated with a 40 to 50 percent increased risk of death, while 81 to 90 beats per minute nearly doubled that risk. A resting heart rate above 90 beats per minute tripled the risk of death.