Heart Disease Risks That Commonly Affect Men

According to Johns Hopkins University, men develop heart disease 10 years earlier, on average, than women do. There are several reasons men are more likely to develop and potentially die from heart disease. In honor of June being Men’s Health Month, we’ve outlined some heart disease risk factors that most commonly affect men.


Women typically produce more estrogen and progesterone than men. These hormones boost blood vessel health. For similar protection, men rely on testosterone, but production of that hormone starts to decrease after age 40. Low T, as it’s often referred to, is both a cardiovascular and metabolic risk factor. This condition can lead to heart disease, increased body fat, unhealthy cholesterol levels and type 2 diabetes.


Brigham and Women’s Hospital notes that men develop plaque buildup in the largest arteries that supply blood to the heart, whereas women develop similar buildup in the smaller vessels. This can cause men to experience strokes and heart attacks at a higher rate than women.

Body Fat

Women often carry excess fat around their lower abdomen and pelvis, while men carry their fat in their bellies, closer to their heart. One of the biggest predictors for serious heart disease is excess body fat, specifically around the middle of your body. When you factor in low T potentially increasing body fat, it’s understandable why this risk factor commonly affects men.


Stress, anger and anxiety can increase your blood pressure and stress hormones, which can restrict blood flow to the heart. Men are more likely to externalize their stress than women. This is problematic when it comes to heart health, as studies have shown your risk for heart attack or stroke is much higher after an angry outburst. 

If you’re a man who is experiencing one or more of these risk factors, we recommend scheduling an appointment with one of our physicians.