Abstract 12891: Longitudinal Association of Poverty and Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors in a Québec Birth Cohort
Background: Poverty in childhood heightens risk of future cardiovascular disease (CVD) but the underlying pathways are poorly understood. We assessed the association of childhood poverty with CVD risk factors in youth according to three predominant life-course theories.
Methods: Data were from the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development (QLSCD), a longitudinal birth cohort (n=2,120). Household income was measured annually with poverty defined as income below the low-income thresholds defined by Statistics Canada and specific to household size and geographic region. Participants with fasting blood at age 10 were eligible (n=593). We examined the 3 life-course theories of poverty in separate linear regression models: early-years (poverty anytime before age 5), accumulation (poverty for at least half the child's life), and change (changes in risk for poverty over time) adjusting for age, sex, sexual maturity stage, poverty at age 10, parental history of hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, or hypertension, weight status (overweight including obese) at age 10, and an interaction between weight status and poverty.
Results: Approximately 25% (n=159) were poor at least once during the early-years, 10% (n=66) for at least half the child's life, and 15% (n=93) had an increasing risk of poverty over time. Among overweight children, experiences with poverty elevated triglycerides and insulin (0.13 mmol/L (p<.05), and 16.8 pmol/L (p<.0001), respectively) in the early-years model, and elevated insulin 13.9 pmol/L (p<.01) in the change model. Insulin was not significantly elevated according to the accumulation model, and triglycerides were not significantly elevated according to either the accumulation or change models. There was no effect of poverty among normalweight children. While being overweight generally worsened the CVD risk factor profile among non-poor subjects, the combined effect of being poor and overweight elevated triglycerides and insulin, and decreased high density lipoprotein (all p<.05) in all models, and elevated systolic blood pressure (p<.05) in the early-years and accumulation models.
Conclusion: Poverty has detrimental effects on CVD risk beyond its effects on weight. Largest effects were noted from the early-years model.
- © 2011 by American Heart Association, Inc.