The contribution of stress to the social patterning of clinical and subclinical CVD risk factors in African Americans: the Jackson Heart Study.
ABSTRACT It is often hypothesized that psychosocial stress may contribute to associations of socioeconomic position (SEP) with risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, few studies have investigated this hypothesis among African Americans, who may be more frequently exposed to stressors due to social and economic circumstances. Cross-sectional data from the Jackson Heart Study (JHS), a large population-based cohort of African Americans, were used to examine the contributions of stressors to the association of SEP with selected cardiovascular (CVD) risk factors and subclinical atherosclerotic disease. Among women, higher income was associated with lower prevalence of hypertension, obesity, diabetes and carotid plaque and lower levels of stress. Higher stress levels were also weakly, albeit positively, associated with hypertension, diabetes, and obesity, but not with plaque. Adjustment for the stress measures reduced the associations of income with hypertension, diabetes and obesity by a small amount that was comparable to, or larger, than the reduction observed after adjustment for behavioral risk factors. In men, high income was associated with lower prevalence of diabetes and stressors were not consistently associated with any of the outcomes examined. Overall, modest mediation effects of stressors were observed for diabetes (15.9%), hypertension (9.7%), and obesity (5.1%) among women but only results for diabetes were statistically significant. No mediation effects of stressors were observed in men. Our results suggest that stressors may partially contribute to associations of SEP with diabetes and possibly hypertension and obesity in African American women. Further research with appropriate study designs and data is needed to understand the dynamic and interacting effects of stressors and behaviors on CVD outcomes as well as sex differences in these effects.
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ABSTRACT: Discrimination may be adversely associated with abdominal obesity, but few studies have examined associations with abdominal fat. The purpose of this study was to examine whether discrimination was independently associated with visceral (VAT) and subcutaneous (SAT) fat and whether these associations differed by sex and age. Participants self-reported experiences of everyday and lifetime discrimination. The main reason for and the coping response to these experiences were also reported. VAT and SAT were quantified by computed tomography. In fully adjusted models, higher reports of everyday discrimination were associated with greater SAT, but not VAT, volumes in men only: SAT increased by 3.6 (standard error = 1.8) cm(3) for each unit increase in the everyday discrimination score. In women, higher reports of lifetime non-racial discrimination were associated with greater VAT (71.6 ± 32.0, P < 0.05) and SAT (212.6 ± 83.6, P < 0.05), but these relationships were attenuated after controlling for body mass index. These cross-sectional findings do not fully support the independent hypothesis of discrimination and abdominal fat. Additional investigations involving longitudinal designs are warranted.Annals of Behavioral Medicine 02/2012; 43(1):4-14. DOI:10.1007/s12160-011-9334-5 · 4.20 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We examined the social patterning of cumulative dysregulation of multiple systems, or allostatic load, among African Americans adults. We examined the cross-sectional associations of socioeconomic status (SES) with summary indices of allostatic load and neuroendocrine, metabolic, autonomic, and immune function components in 4048 Jackson Heart Study participants. Lower education and income were associated with higher allostatic load scores in African American adults. Patterns were most consistent for the metabolic and immune dimensions, less consistent for the autonomic dimension, and absent for the neuroendocrine dimension among African American women. Associations of SES with the global allostatic load score and the metabolic and immune domains persisted after adjustment for behavioral factors and were stronger for income than for education. There was some evidence that the neuroendocrine dimension was inversely associated with SES after behavioral adjustment in men, but the immune and autonomic components did not show clear dose-response trends, and we observed no associations for the metabolic component. Findings support our hypothesis that allostatic load is socially patterned in African American women, but this pattern is less consistent in African American men.American Journal of Public Health 05/2012; 102(7):1362-9. DOI:10.2105/AJPH.2011.300444 · 4.23 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: African Americans suffer disproportionately from advanced and progressive chronic kidney disease (CKD). Socioeconomic factors are believed to play an important role in this disparity, and likely influence African Americans' increased risk of CKD through multiple pathways. Low socioeconomic status (SES) may contribute to racial disparities in CKD because of the greater prevalence of poverty, for example, among African Americans as compared with whites. However, low SES has a stronger relation with CKD among African Americans than among whites, underscoring that the context and magnitude of socioeconomic influences on CKD outcomes varies between these populations. These socioeconomic influences may produce new or potentiate existing racial differences in biology. This review discusses what is known about the role of SES in explaining racial disparities in CKD, highlights several knowledge gaps in this area, and suggests future directions toward the elimination of disparities in CKD.Seminars in Nephrology 09/2013; 33(5):468-475. DOI:10.1016/j.semnephrol.2013.07.008 · 2.94 Impact Factor