The Great Recession heightened cardiovascular risk factors, according to a new UCLA-led study. The Great Recession, spanning 2008 to 2010, was associated with increased blood pressure and glucose levels in American adults.


The associations were found especially among older homeowners and individuals younger than 65 years still employed, says a new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Results determined that economic crises can have measurable effects on public health and it may help policymakers and providers plan some strategy to handle another recession in a better way.

The Great Recession was the most significant economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The study revealed that all those Americans directly or indirectly affected by the Great Recession and showed the greatest signs of worse health.

A team led by the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles analyzed the data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis for the period from 2000 to 2012. Initially, they examined the blood pressure and glucose data for the 4600 people, ages between 45 to 84 years, at multiple times during the Great Recession, and after the recession ended.

The findings showed increases in the blood pressure among the individuals. The researchers said that the participants might be especially vulnerable to economic stress since they could be at risk of losing jobs and houses.

“When populations are faced with major economic stresses, we need to keep in mind the likely health risks that may result,” said, Teresa Seeman, lead author of the study and a professor of medicine & epidemiology in the Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.