Unfortunately, yes. Estrogen protects your vessels in a number of ways. First, it keeps lousy LDL cholesterol levels in check by ensuring there’s enough healthy HDL around. Second, it relaxes blood vessels during changes in blood pressure. So as estrogen levels drop, so does good HDL cholesterol, lousy LDL increases, and your vessels get as stiff as your grandfather’s knee. All of these are major risk factors for heart disease.
While you cannot prevent your estrogen levels from dropping unless you take HT (hormone therapy medication, and remember to talk to your doc about taking it with two baby aspirins a day), you can make sure that you are active, eating well, and managing stress. Get those 10,000 steps, stick to the Mediterranean diet, and keep your stress in check, and your risk of heart disease will go down.