The prognostic value of resting heart rate for health status

Dong Hyuk Park, Justin Y. Jeon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE: Resting heart rate[RHR] is a simple, inexpensive, non-invasive, and ubiquitously collected vital sign. Further, heart rate information is now more readily accessible to the general population due to the popularity of wearable devices, capable of measuring RHR. Purpose of the current review paper are to summarize 1) literature which report associations between RHR and health outcomes, and 2) to suggest the use of RHR as a new health indicator METHODS: We performed a search, including reviews and original papers, on the PubMed and Korean Information Service System (KISS) electronic databases of articles assessing the association between RHR and the risk and prognosis of diseases. For our search strategy, we used combinations of the following key terms: resting heart rate, cardiovascular disease, hypertension and cancer. RESULTS: RHR’s prognostic value as a marker of general health, has received considerable attention recently. Studies have consistently shown clear associations of elevated RHR with cardiovascular disease [CVD], type 2 diabetes, and even cancer [prevalence, incidence and mortality]. Due to strong association between RHR and health outcomes, RHR may be used as a preliminary health indicator, to detect undiagnosed cardiometabolic diseases and cancer. However, it is still unclear whether elevated RHR is one of the risk markers or risk factors in diseases of our interest. Factors associated with RHR include aerobic fitness, physical activity, body mass, smoking, drink-ing, sleep duration, and stress. Changing these modifiable lifestyle components coincide with general health recommendations, which would improve one’s health. CONCLUSIONS: RHR may reflect disease risk and changes lifestyles which may affect health outcomes. Therefore, due to the ease of measurement, lowering RHR may be a new target for better health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-33
Number of pages10
JournalExercise Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Feb

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Korean Society of Exercise Physiology.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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