-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
MONDAY, Jan. 6, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Hispanic women tend to
be less informed than white women about the link between being
obese or overweight and increased risk for heart disease, a new
For the study, published recently in the
Journal of Women's Health, the researchers reviewed answers
provided by almost 400 Hispanic women and more than 300 white women
about heart disease and body perception.
Although public awareness of heart disease has increased, the
researchers found minority women still do not know as much as
others about the risk factors for this significant health problem.
This discrepancy makes efforts to prevent heart disease more
challenging, said the research team from Columbia University
Medical Center in New York City.
"Based on these findings, prevention strategies need to target [cardiovascular disease] knowledge and awareness among overweight and obese Hispanic women," Dr. Susan Kornstein, the journal's editor-in-chief and executive director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Institute for Women's Health, said in a journal news release.
When asked to identify the leading cause of death among women in
the United States, only 27 percent of Hispanics knew the answer was
heart disease compared to 88 percent of whites. Those with limited
English were least likely to know that heart disease is the top
Only 59 percent of Hispanic women knew the symptoms of heart
attack versus 81 percent of white women. And many fewer Hispanics
correctly estimated their weight compared to whites. Overweight and
obesity raise the risk of developing serious health problems such
as diabetes and heart disease.
Among the study volunteers, 67 percent of Hispanics were
overweight or obese versus 42 percent of whites.
The American Heart Association provides more information on
Hispanics and heart disease.
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