Study: Heart health has decreased in recent years

Over past decades, rates of obesity, diabetes and hypertension among Americans had been falling, but that's not the case any more, it seems. Heart health in the U.S. has taken a turn for the worse in recent times, with far more adults having high-risk profiles for cardiovascular disease over the 10-year period studied than in the past.

According to a new study published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association, only one in 12 U.S. adults (8.3 percent) had low-risk profiles for cardiovascular disease from 1994 to 2004. Compare this to 4.4 percent of adults rating low risk from 1971 to 1975, 5.7 percent from 1976 to 1980 and 7.5 percent from 1999 to 2004. The only period in which Americans appear to have been healthier was 1988 to 1994, in which 10.5 percent of Americans had low-risk profiles.

To determine level of risk among the study group--adults ages 25 to 74--researchers determined whether they had ever smoked, whether they were ever diagnosed with diabetes, and whether they'd kept cholesterol levels below 200 milligrams per deciliter and blood pressure at normal levels without prescription meds.

To learn more about the study:
- read this UPI piece

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