Segragated neighborhoods impact your heart health

Cardiovascular (CV) disease is the formal phase given to diseases of the heart and blood vessels. According to The Heart Foundation, diseases under this umbrella term are responsible for more than 1 million deaths annually, and are among the leading causes of death for both men and women in the United States. When it comes to cardiovascular disease and risk factors associated with it, race/ethnicity has always been thought to have an impact. SEE ALSO: Owning a dog lowers your chance for heart disease Though heart diseases are among the top causes of death for every ethnicity in the country, some are more likely than others to have predisposing risk factors. Hispanics, for example, have higher CV risks because they suffer disproportionately from conditions like diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. One CV risk for ethnicities uncovered in the last few years has to do with segregation in communities. According to a new research study from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, at the neighborhood level, segregation is linked to health, but more specifically, exclusionary housing is linked to cardiovascular disease rates. Exclusionary zoning or housing is the utilization of zoning ordinances to exclude certain types of people from a given community. “Despite discrimination and other exclusionary housing practices having been outlawed for >50 years, racial/ethnic residential segregation in US metropolitan areas remains high; the average white individual lives in a neighborhood that is 75 percent white, whereas the average black and Hispanic individuals, who make up approximately 13 percent and 16 percent of the US population, respectively, live in neighborhoods that are only 35 percent white,” researchers wrote in the journal Circulation. Non-Hispanic black living in neighborhood segregation experienced a 12 percent increase in cardiovascular risk for developing conditions such as angina, probable angina followed by revascularization, heart attack, resuscitated cardiac arrest, congenital heart defect death, stroke or stroke death. Non-Hispanics whites living in neighborhood segregation experienced lower CVD risk compared to other ethnicities, and Hispanics saw no change in CV risk due to neighborhood segregation. “Our findings suggest that associations of segregation with CVD risk vary by race/ethnic group, reflecting differences in the processes that lead to segregation across these different groups and in the consequences of segregation for CVD-relevant exposures,” study author Kiarri N. Kershaw, PhD , from the department of preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine,said in a press release. “A better understanding of the impact of segregation on CVD risk, and the individual- and neighborhood-level pathways linking segregation to CVD, as well, may help guide the efforts to prevent CVD and reduce racial/ethnic disparities in [CV] outcomes.” It has been suggested in past research that neighborhood segregation can impact health through complex social structures and access to cultural foods. In 2014, a study from Baylor University and the University of Texas Medical Branch found that older Mexican American men are less likely to engage in problem drinking as residents of neighborhoods with a higher proportion of Mexican Americans. SEE ALSO: What neighborhoods have to do with Mexican American alcoholism The reason for this was attributed to protective influences such as inter-household family networks, residential stability, high levels of trust, local community institutions, cultural expectations related to drinking, and other sources of social support. It is not clear in the new study why Hispanics, who have high rates of CV risk factors, were unaffected by neighborhood segregation.The post Segragated neighborhoods impact your heart health appeared first on Voxxi.

Segregation impacts CV risk among ethnicities–except Hispanics (Photo: Shutterstock)

Cardiovascular (CV) disease is the formal phase given to diseases of the heart and blood vessels. According to The Heart Foundation, diseases under this umbrella term are responsible for more than 1 million deaths annually, and are among the leading causes of death for both men and women in the United States.

When it comes to cardiovascular disease and risk factors associated with it, race/ethnicity has always been thought to have an impact.

SEE ALSO: Owning a dog lowers your chance for heart disease

Though heart diseases are among the top causes of death for every ethnicity in the country, some are more likely than others to have predisposing risk factors. Hispanics, for example, have higher CV risks because they suffer disproportionately from conditions like diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure.

One CV risk for ethnicities uncovered in the last few years has to do with segregation in communities. According to a new research study from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, at the neighborhood level, segregation is linked to health, but more specifically, exclusionary housing is linked to cardiovascular disease rates.

Exclusionary zoning or housing is the utilization of zoning ordinances to exclude certain types of people from a given community.

“Despite discrimination and other exclusionary housing practices having been outlawed for >50 years, racial/ethnic residential segregation in US metropolitan areas remains high; the average white individual lives in a neighborhood that is 75 percent white, whereas the average black and Hispanic individuals, who make up approximately 13 percent and 16 percent of the US population, respectively, live in neighborhoods that are only 35 percent white,” researchers wrote in the journal Circulation.

Non-Hispanic black living in neighborhood segregation experienced a 12 percent increase in cardiovascular risk for developing conditions such as angina, probable angina followed by revascularization, heart attack, resuscitated cardiac arrest, congenital heart defect death, stroke or stroke death.

Non-Hispanics whites living in neighborhood segregation experienced lower CVD risk compared to other ethnicities, and Hispanics saw no change in CV risk due to neighborhood segregation.

Grafetti can tell a story
The culture of a neighborhood can impact residents’ health choices. (meunierd/Shutterstock)

“Our findings suggest that associations of segregation with CVD risk vary by race/ethnic group, reflecting differences in the processes that lead to segregation across these different groups and in the consequences of segregation for CVD-relevant exposures,” study author Kiarri N. Kershaw, PhD , from the department of preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine,said in a press release.

“A better understanding of the impact of segregation on CVD risk, and the individual- and neighborhood-level pathways linking segregation to CVD, as well, may help guide the efforts to prevent CVD and reduce racial/ethnic disparities in [CV] outcomes.”

It has been suggested in past research that neighborhood segregation can impact health through complex social structures and access to cultural foods. In 2014, a study from Baylor University and the University of Texas Medical Branch found that older Mexican American men are less likely to engage in problem drinking as residents of neighborhoods with a higher proportion of Mexican Americans.

SEE ALSO: What neighborhoods have to do with Mexican American alcoholism

The reason for this was attributed to protective influences such as inter-household family networks, residential stability, high levels of trust, local community institutions, cultural expectations related to drinking, and other sources of social support.

It is not clear in the new study why Hispanics, who have high rates of CV risk factors, were unaffected by neighborhood segregation.

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The post Segragated neighborhoods impact your heart health appeared first on Voxxi.