India grapples with a staggering proportion of heart disease cases, representing 60% of the global total despite comprising less than 20% of the world’s population, as per public health figures. Additionally, younger individuals in India face mounting obesity and hypertension rates, exacerbating their susceptibility to early-onset heart disease. In India, half of all heart attacks in men strike before age 50, and a quarter before age 40. Women also contend with elevated mortality rates due to heart disease.
A range of lifestyle elements, including unhealthy behaviors, sedentarism, obesity, and smoking, contributes to the prevalence of heart conditions among India’s youth. Elevated blood homocysteine levels stand as another lesser-known independent risk factor for heart disease, in addition to diabetes, hypertension, and high cholesterol. Dr. Sameer Gupta, an Interventional Cardiologist and Head of Cardiology for the Metro Group of Hospitals, elaborates on the crucial role of homocysteine testing in detecting heart disease risk.
Tata 1mg Labs’ recent data analysis of 4609 homocysteine tests conducted in Mumbai over the past two years reveals a concerning 87.57% of participants with higher-than-normal homocysteine levels. This predisposes them to heart-related complications, such as blood clots, heart attacks, and strokes. Remarkably, women exhibited more favorable results than men, with only 36.84% showing elevated homocysteine levels, in contrast to 62.93% of men.
Dr. Gupta underscores the importance of assessing homocysteine levels alongside other risk factors and patient backgrounds. While high homocysteine levels indicate increased risk, no conclusive evidence exists to prove that reducing these levels will decrease heart disease risk. Nonetheless, regular heart health assessments and early detection of heart conditions are vital for appropriate intervention and improved health outcomes.