Well, actually we’re all at risk to some extent. We can’t do anything about our age, gender or family history, but we can do a lot to keep healthier longer, by not smoking, keeping active and eating a healthy diet. It’s important to know your numbers, and understand how your lifestyle choices influence your long-term health. The numbers below are for guidance only – your health professional can give you more specific information and advice.
Total Cholesterol – ideally should be under 5mmol/l, even better if under4
High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) – the ‘good’ cholesterol, ideally should be above 1.2 mmol/l in women and 1mmol/l in men
Blood Pressure – under 140/90mmHg, or 130/80mmHg if you are diabetic
Body Mass Index (BMI) – should be 19-25. Over 25 is considered overweight, and over 30 obese.
Waist – women: less than 32in (80cm), men: less than 37in (90cm)
ASSESSING YOUR RISKS
There are a variety of tools available which can help to assess your health risks. However, these are only guides and must be interpreted in context, so for more detailed information on assessing and managing your risks please see your health professional.
The Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) publishes clinical guidelines for health professionals. Sign Guideline no 97 Risk Estimation and the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease recommends that all adults aged 40 should have their cardiovascular risk assessed every 5 years.
Click here to access SIGN 97 versions for professionals and patients.
There are a number of tools which can be used to help estimate cardiovascular health risks. Click on the links below to try some yourself.
Body Mass Index Calculator
Calculate you BMI here
Cardiac Risk Score
This is the ASSIGN risk scoring tool recommended by SIGN for use by health professionals – access it here.
Diabetes Risk Score
Answer 7 questions to check your type 2 diabetes risk score on the Diabetes UK website here.
Heart Age Calculator
Is your ‘heart age’ the same, older or younger than your chronological age? Try this calculator to find out by clicking here.