Hundreds of thousands of people in Germany suffer a heart attack every year. In 2020 alone, more than 44,000 people died from heart attacks, according to the German Heart Report. However, cardiovascular disease does not appear out of the blue: the vessels of the heart have usually narrowed in a process that has been going on for years.
On the one hand, this “vascular calcification” can be favored by factors that cannot be influenced, such as age or genetics, but on the other hand, avoidable risk factors also play an important role. For example, smoking, lack of exercise or stress can cause our heart to “age” faster and lead to cardiovascular disease.
Calculate heart age: HerzFit app can determine heart attack risk
the German Heart Foundation has developed an app that anyone can use to check their heart condition. The “HerzFit-App” was developed by independent cardiologists and includes, among other things, a risk calculator that can determine the age of the heart.
A bad result doesn’t mean you’re helpless at the mercy of a heart attack or stroke, says cardiologist Heribert Schunkert, vice president of the German Heart Foundation. dpa. But it should be seen as an invitation to do something for your health. The heart attack risk test can also be used to identify previously undiscovered risk factors, which can then be further targeted during the next visit to the family doctor, for example.
The app also provides expert advice on how to improve heart health, both for reading and in the form of podcasts and videos. In addition to information on healthy eating and more exercise, there are strategies for coping with stress and quitting smoking, for example.
The app aims to improve heart health
Users can set and track personal health goals. According to the Heart Foundation, the app asks for personal health data such as blood pressure, heart rate, LDL cholesterol, long-term blood sugar and weight. These remain on the person’s mobile phone and can be changed or deleted at any time – without the advice of a third party.
The German Heart Center Munich, the Technical University of Munich and DIgiMed Bayern, among others, participated in the development of the application. The HerzFit app is available for free in the App Store or in the Google Play Store.