Risk of heart attack high for fit middle-aged men
Middle-aged men are more fit than ever, and though that’s the good news, the bad news is they may be putting themselves at risk of having a heart attack.
According to the National Institutes of Health, the risk of sudden cardiac arrest, which occurs when the heart suddenly stops beating, can be brought on by extreme physical stress, increases with age, and affects men two to three times more often than women.
Although daily physical activity has benefits and can prevent and treat many diseases, including heart disease and obesity, researchers now suspect there may be a point at which too much exertion can become dangerous, even deadly, especially for middle-aged men.
The reason: By middle age, most men have early-stage vessel disease such as hardening of the arteries. Activities such as long-distance bike races, marathons and triathlons can cause structural changes to the heart and large arteries, and can permanently trigger rhythm problems and permanent damage, according to a study.