Anger and hostility can have harmful affects on one’s cardiovascular health, but the color of your skin may determine how severe that impact will be.
In a new study from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Shervin Assari, MD, a research investigator at the Center for Research on Ethnicity, Culture and Health in U of M’s School of Public Health and Department of Psychiatry, found that whites are more likely than blacks to die from heart problems related to their levels of anger.
Assari, who has been at U of M for about five years, examined data from the Institute for Social Research Americans’ Changing Life Study, looking at nearly 1,600 individuals from 2001 to 2011. He measured their baseline hostility and anger and kept track of deaths due to cardiovascular disease over the 10-year period.
He found that whites were 40 percent more likely to develop cardiovascular problems leading to death than blacks with the same levels of anger and hostility. All other factors including age, education, smoking, drinking and other health issues were equal, and outcomes were the same for men and women.