"Why Blacks And Hispanics Are At Higher Risk Of Heart Disease" - Sheila Dougherty
While heart disease is the leading killer for all Americans, African-Americans and Hispanics face even greater risks. Annapoorna Kini, MD, professor of medicine and cardiology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai discusses why the statistics are higher for these individuals. According to Dr. Kini, the prevalence of high blood pressure in African-Americans is the highest in the world. Research suggests African-Americans may carry a gene that makes them more salt-sensitive, increasing the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease. African-Americans are disproportionately affected by obesity. Among non-Hispanic blacks 20 and older, 63 percent of men and 77 percent of women are overweight or obese. African-Americans are more likely to have diabetes than non-Hispanic whites. The American Heart Association recently issued a scientific statement highlighting the public health burden of cardiovascular disease in Hispanics and calling for the development of culturally tailored interventions and the prioritizing of Latinos in the nation’s heart-health-improvement goals. Dr. Kini added that lifestyle modifications and decreasing weight are strategies to prevention of heart disease.
—Annapoorna S. Kini, MD, Professor, Medicine, Cardiology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai