Cardiovascular disease risk factors and psychological distress among Hispanics/Latinos: The Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL)

Prev Med. 2016 Jun:87:144-150. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2016.02.032. Epub 2016 Feb 26.


Studies show that cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors are correlated with psychological distress, yet research examining these relationships among Hispanic/Latinos is lacking. The population-based Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos enrolled a cohort of Hispanic/Latino adults (N=16,415) 18-74years of age at the time of recruitment, from four US metropolitan areas, between March 2008 and June 2011. Psychological distress (i.e., 10-item Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale, 10 item Spielberger Trait Anxiety Scale, and a combined depression/anxiety score), socio-demographics (i.e., age, education, income, insurance, sex, and Hispanic/Latino background), acculturation (i.e., country of birth and language preference), and traditional CVD risk factors (i.e., dyslipidemia, obesity, current cigarette smoking, diabetes, and hypertension) were assessed at baseline. Associations between CVD risk factors and psychological distress measures by sex were examined using multiple linear regression models, accounting for complex survey design and sampling weights and controlling for socio-demographic and acculturation covariates. In adjusted analyses, all three psychological distress measures were significantly related to smoking. For females, greater psychological distress was significantly related to obesity and current smoking. For males, diabetes and current smoking were associated with psychological distress. For males and females, dyslipidemia and hypertension were not associated with psychological distress after adjusting for other factors. Elevated depression and anxiety symptoms were associated with CVD risk factors for Hispanic/Latino men and women. However, these results were not consistent across Hispanic/Latino groups. As promoted by the integrative care model, psychosocial concerns should be considered in research on CVD risk and chronic disease prevention.

Keywords: CVD risk factors; Hispanic/Latino; Psychological distress.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Acculturation
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anxiety
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / ethnology
  • Depression / psychology
  • Diabetes Mellitus
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / psychology*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States / epidemiology