Summary: A new study shows that there is a significant and adverse association between violent crimes and cardiovascular health. It appears that increased violent crimes also result in an upsurge in Heart Disease Mortality. Since people of color are more likely to be living in localities with high crime rates, they are especially at risk.
Violent crimes cause much death and despair. Moreover, these are among the preventable causes of death. However, it is also vital to understand that violent crimes cause much emotional distress in the population, thus increasing the risk of various health issues.
A new study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that violent crimes can significantly increase the risk of a heart attack. It means that violent crimes affect individuals directly affected by it and have a grater impact on the community at large.
Researchers say that this study shows the built environment’s impact on health and well-being. In addition, this is among the first studies to show that violent crimes are also one of the important social determinants of cardiovascular health in the broader context of socioeconomic status and racism.
In the study, researchers used data from the last 15 years from Chicago, the data of violent crime between 2000-2014 and the incidence of heart attack in the same period. They found that a 16 percent decline in violent crimes coincided with a 13 percent cardiovascular mortality.
In the study, researchers decided to further examine the data from various localities in Chicago. They found that the graver the crime problem in the locality, the higher the incidence of heart issues. Thus, the study found that localities with a violent crime rate of 59% lower than other localities also resulted in about a 15% decline in heart disease-related mortality. Interestingly, the study found that even a slight decrease in violent crime, like 10%, could result in a significant decline in cardiovascular mortality.
Researchers say that they have been amazed to find such a strong correlation between violent crimes and cardiovascular events.
Since even the smallest change in violent crime rates can influence cardiovascular mortality, researchers say that it also means that even a slight rise in crimes in any locality may have long-term health consequences. Though the study was done only in one large urban area, researchers say that they have every reason to believe that the results of the study are generalizable.
Researchers say that there are some other notable findings in the study. For example, they found that violent crime rates were higher in areas where people of color live. This naturally puts them at a greater risk of specific health issues. However, researchers did not analyze the racial makeup of various localities in their study. Nonetheless, they say that evidence from their study is significant.
It also means that many health disorders are more common in certain communities like black or other racial groups, not due to genetics, but rather due to the environment in which they live. Finally, it means that racist policies are putting them at a greater risk of certain health conditions.
Some early studies have already examined the role of the built environment on health and well-being. Like the studies show the positive health effects of increasing green spaces or helping communities to carry out home repairs. Now researchers say that there is a need to explore how these measures can influence the cardiovascular health of individuals.
Additionally, researchers say that in the future, they plan to explore the association between various types of violent crimes and their impact on health. For example, violent gun crime has spiked in some parts of the US in recent years. Since it is entirely possible that different kinds of crimes in various neighborhoods may have completely different effects on community health.
It is our mission to bring real hope and transformational change to patients who would otherwise be consigned to a lifetime of medications, doctor’s visits, and suffering. We expose misaligned incentives and return the power of health to the individual. We believe empowered individuals change their communities. We use a combination of lifestyle intervention, medication management, and emerging scientific research to help our patients. When you are ready or have questions, reach out.
The content provided herein is not intended to provide assessment, diagnosis, treatment, or medical advice; it also does not constitute provision of healthcare services. No information in this content should ever be considered as a substitute for advice from a healthcare professional, it is provided for thoughtful discussion, informational and educational purposes only.