Prepare to Worry: Online Calculator Predicts When You’ll Have a Heart Attack

Forget the age-old question of what came first between the chicken and the egg, the real question is what came first: the hypochondriac or the internet? 

Prior to spending the majority of my waking hours hooked up the internet with my eyes glued to monitors and screens of various shapes and sizes, I was of the opinion that I was more-or-less invincible. I’m a man of various vices, but very rarely did I ever contemplate the health implications of those vices, let alone consider that one day I – and everyone I love – will die.

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Unfortunately, overexposure to the internet now means that whenever I feel a slight pain in my chest or, to be honest, anywhere else on my body, I come to the conclusion that I’m probably moments away from death. Health anxiety isn’t exactly a new phenomenon, but with so much information regarding the inner workings of our body available to us now, along with infinite, scientifically inaccurate opinions posted on forums by other hypochondriacs, it’s inevitable that we’re all a lot more concerned about our health these days than when we weren’t all addicted to our smartphones. 

The UK’s National Health Service are looking to capitalise on our fear of our demise with its new heart attack calculator, a rather sinister-sounding online calculator that does exactly what it says on the tin. 

After acquiring some basic information about you including your height, weight, age and ethnicity, the NHS Heart Attack Calculator™ will then delve further into your medical past by asking you a series of questions about any current/past illnesses related to heart attacks/strokes, along with questioning you about your family’s potential history of cardiovascular disease. It then informs you of the age of your heart compared to your actual age, along with revealing the steps you should take in order to reduce the risk of suffering a heart attack of stroke.

In other words, it’s completely terrifying. Yes, I understand that this is to “raise awareness” about how to prevent heart problems in the future, but honestly, is there anyone who doesn’t know what is/isn’t good/bad for their heart at this point? Smoking bad. Being overweight? Bad. Having a family history of heart diseases? Bad. Putting up a fancier version of the Death Clock in order to continue to remind us of the inevitability of death doesn’t seem productive; it seems downright cruel. 

Now excuse me while I go smoke a 20 pack of cigarettes and eat a cheeseburger in order to bring myself some comfort after discovering I’ve only got 30 more years on this planet.

Check the heart attack risk calculator out for yourself right here.

Photo: Getty Images