Everyone knows their age, but what about their vascular age? Also known as heart age or cardiovascular risk (CVR) age, your vascular age (VA) takes into account metrics such as blood pressure, vascular stiffening, blood vessel stiffness and pulse-wave velocity to supply a snapshot of your general cardiac health.

Or as one 2016 research paper defined it, “the vascular age of a patient with CVR factors is defined as the age that an individual of the same sex as our patient would have if he or she were to have the same absolute risk but controlled risk factors.”

In other words, if a 40-year-old male has a VA of 63, he is said to have the same probability of dying from a cardiovascular event as a healthy person aged 63, due to the “age” of his heart and arteries.

Unlike with our real age, there are a number of steps we can fortunately take to bring down our VA and consequently bolster heart health. In this article, we shall summarise them.