Prolonged Sitting for Menopausal Women Can Cause Heart Diseases

A recent cross-sectional study, published in the Journal of American Heart Association, says menopausal woman who are obese and have a sedentary lifestyle are at an increased risk of heart diseases.

A woman is considered to be menopausal if she is over 45 years old and her menstrual cycle has stopped for the past 12 months. It happens because of a declination of a natural hormone, called estrogen, in the body.

The study focused on the association between the cultural differences in sedentary lifestyle and cardiometabolic risks in grossly fat Hispanic and non-Hispanic women. The sample consisted of 102 Hispanic women and 416 non-Hispanic women. The data was analyzed by using a validated machine.

The findings of the study showed that Hispanic women sat less than non-Hispanic women. An average sitting of Hispanic women was 50.3 minutes less per day than the average sitting of non-Hispanic women, with a sitting bout of 3.6 minutes less than Non-Hispanics. A sitting bout is a period of uninterrupted time.

The research also showed that desk-bounded women have a higher risk of diabetes. The analysis showed that the Hispanic women are prone to a higher risk of developing diabetes than the non-Hispanic women.

According to a report by American Heart Association in 2002, 70% of menopausal women develop cardiovascular disease and 30% develop osteoporosis (porous and fragile bone disease) in the United States. After the menopause, women have more chances to develop diabetes as compared to men. The women in their 60s and 70s are more prone to have diabetes than men in the same age group. High risks of developing diabetes might be associated with the abnormal hormonal changes that result in menopause.

The hormones that have control over the regulation of menstrual cycle are hypothalamic and pituitary hormones. A specified hormone, called estrogen, is a primary female sex hormone. The less secretion of estrogen by ovaries results in the permanent cessation of menstrual cycle.

The menopausal women have to face adverse effects physically as well as emotionally at the beginning of the condition. The symptoms include irritability in mood, sleep disturbances (hypersomnia or insomnia), mental distress, depression, continuous pain in head (migraine), difficulty in concentrating, joints and muscles pain, osteoporotic symptoms, mood swings, hot flashes, dryness in mouth, eyes and vagina, racing heart, obesity and diabetes.

Physical activities are important for the menopausal women as it reduces 30% to 50% chances of having cardiovascular diseases. Aerobic exercises and other strength exercises can help those postmenopausal women who have metabolic syndrome like heart diseases, diabetes and stroke. Moderate activities like jogging, walking, swimming, cycling, gardening and dancing are really effective for physical fitness of menopausal women.

Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a preventive cardiologist from New York and a national Go Red for Women volunteer, says, “Because of the profound effect sitting has on the metabolism and the risk factors for heart disease, physical activity needs to be part of our lives all day long, not just when we are consciously exercising.”

The most suitable way to get rid of these damaging health risks is to take calcium 1,000 mg to 1,500 mg per day and vitamin D for healthier bones.

The symptoms of postmenopausal syndrome differ between Hispanic and non-Hispanic women. Moreover, Central American women are at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases and fasting insulin.

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