Journal of the American Heart Association 2017 09 226(9) pii e006027
In the United States, there are persistent racial and ethnic disparities in cardiovascular disease morbidity and mortality. National efforts have focused on reducing these disparities; however, little is known about the long-term trends in racial/ethnic disparities in cardiovascular health (CVH).
METHODS AND RESULTS
We included 11 285 adults aged ≥20 years from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys survey cycles 1999/2000 through 2011/2012. CVH includes 7 health factors and behaviors-diet, physical activity, smoking status, body mass index, blood pressure, blood glucose, and total cholesterol-each scored as ideal (2 points), intermediate (1 point), or poor (0 points). Overall CVH is a summation of these scores (range, 0-14) points. Age-adjusted mean CVH scores were calculated by race/ethnicity (non-Hispanic black, non-Hispanic white, or Mexican American) and sex for each survey cycle. Non-Hispanic black women had significantly lower mean CVH scores as compared with non-Hispanic white women at each survey cycle (difference=0.93; P=0.001 in 2011/2012) and Mexican-American women had significantly lower mean score as compared with non-Hispanic white women at almost all survey cycles (difference=0.71; P=0.02 in 2011/2012). Differences between racial/ethnic groups were smaller for men and were mostly nonsignificant.
From 1999/2000 to 2011/2012, there were enduring disparities in CVH for non-Hispanic black and Mexican-American women as compared with non-Hispanic white women. Disparities that were present in 1999/2000 were present in 2011/2012, though no racial/ethnic differences became more pronounced over time. These findings provide US nationally representative data to evaluate health factors and behaviors of particular concern regarding racial/ethnic disparities in cardiovascular health.