YOU are less likely to die early from a heart attack if you live in the south, according to new figures released by the British Heart Foundation.

A report put together by the organisation reveals that deaths from coronary heart disease (CHD) across the UK have dropped by 3,000 in just one year.

The study also shows that women are 80 per cent and men 50 per cent less likely to die prematurely from coronary heart disease in the south of the country than their counterparts in Scotland.

Northerners are more likely to die in the winter from CHD than southerners and Wales is the UK's leader for excess winter deaths from CHD.

Sir Charles George, medical director at the British Heart Foundation, said a combination of lifestyle and environmental factors were at play.

He said: "Differences in smoking and dietary intake may go a little way to explaining the higher rates of CHD deaths in the north and Scotland.

"Higher death rates now may be a reflection of poor maternal and infant nutrition as well as other environmental factors."

Of all the regions in the UK, the rates of smoking in the south are lower and northerners are the biggest drinkers.