It was found that access to healthy food affects the risk of death from heart failure

It was found that access to healthy food affects the risk of death from heart failure

Food insecurity has previously been linked to adverse cardiovascular outcomes, but research is limited regarding the local food environment and association with death from heart failure.

Living in a community with easy access to healthy and affordable food is associated with lower death rates from heart failure, according to a study published in Circulation: heart failure.

Investors have defined food insecurity as healthy food that is not readily available on a daily basis due to poverty or socio-economic challenges, which may lead to hunger or the consumption of less desirable, diverse and quality foods.

Food insecurity has previously been linked to adverse cardiovascular outcomes, but research is limited regarding the local food environment and association with death from heart failure. The study authors note that in 2019, poverty was found to be the strongest socioeconomic factor associated with heart failure and coronary heart disease at the county level in the United States. They also found that this relationship was stronger for heart failure than for coronary heart disease.

Study lead author Keerthi T said: “The death rate from heart failure is rising among populations living in socioeconomic deprivation, and most importantly, we believe that nutrition plays a role in deaths from heart failure, and food insecurity may be particularly harmful in this population group. Gundy, MD, an internal medicine resident at the University of Michigan Health System in Ann Arbor, Michigan, said in a news release. “We know that there are important relationships between food access, affordability and heart health. This will need to be addressed in order to make changes to the cardiovascular disease burden in populations living in socioeconomic deprivation going forward.”

The researchers examined the death rate from heart failure because it is a consistent measure that has been reported in all US counties. These data allow investigators to comprehensively analyze heart failure outcomes at the population level and whether there is an association between the US county-wide dietary environment and heart failure mortality rates.

The team reviewed 2018 data from the National Vital Statistics System, a database of all births and deaths in the United States. They looked for possible associations between heart failure mortality rates in each county with the 2018 Food Insecurity Index score and the Food Environment Index score.

The food insecurity percentage score is the percentage of the population that lacks adequate and consistent access to healthy food. The Food Environment Index score is based on a set of scales ranked from 0 (worst) to 10 (best) in areas such as affordability of nutritious food, food insecurity, proximity to a grocery store, transportation, and socioeconomic factors, from the Department of Food Environment American agriculture. Atlas County Health Classification and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Furthermore, the Food Environment Atlas collects statistics on food environment indicators and provides an overview of a community’s ability to access healthy food.

After examining 2,956 US counties, the study showed that the average food insecurity rate was 13% for all counties, while the average Food Environment Index score was 7.8. Districts with a percentage of food insecurity above the national average of 13.7% were found to have an increased mortality from heart failure compared to districts with a percentage of food insecurity below the average.

After the researchers adjusted for several socioeconomic and health factors, including poverty rate, income inequality, rural versus urban locations, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and smoking, they found that a 1% reduction in food insecurity By county it was associated with a 1.3% lower death rate from heart failure. In addition, they found that a one-unit increase in the Food Environment Index score by county was associated with a 3.6% decrease in heart failure mortality.

Decreases in the food environment index and increases in the proportion of food insecurity at the district level showed a stronger association with mortality from heart failure than with mortality for other subtypes of cardiovascular disease, as well as with all-cause mortality. The strongest association between food environment and heart failure mortality was found in the counties with the highest income inequality and the highest poverty rate.

The results of this study are unfortunate but not surprising. These findings are consistent with previous studies that have shown the association between cardiovascular disease and food insecurity,” said Ann Thorndike, MD, MPH, FAHA, director of the Cardiovascular Lifestyle Program at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, immediately past chair of the Nutrition Division of the FAHA committee. and member of the Society’s Lifestyle Council, said in a press release. “This study provides a robust assessment of the food environment by US counties and shows that characteristics of the food environment are closely associated with death from heart failure.”

One limitation of the study was that it only captured data over the course of one year before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, which may have limited generalizability at this time. The investigators said more research is needed to examine these associations over a longer period.

“Food insecurity and lack of access to healthy food are major contributors to poor diet quality and what is referred to as ‘food insecurity,’” Thorndike said in a press release. And optimal vascularity, and especially an ideal diet, we need to expand our efforts to address the psychosocial determinants of our health behaviors and well-being. These efforts must include policies, health care, and community interventions that improve access to nutritious food for people at every stage of life.”

reference

Lack of access to healthy food may increase the risk of death from heart failure. American Heart Association. Oct 25, 2022. Accessed Oct 25, 2022. https://newsroom.heart.org/news/lack-of-access-to-healthy-food-may-raise-risk-of-death-from-heart-failure?preview=6325

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