Abstract 13536: AHA Ideal Cardiovascular Health: Correlations with Measures of Vascular Health
Background: The importance of healthy behaviors in the prevention of cardiovascular (CV) disease is receiving increased attention. As part of a campaign to reduce heart disease, the American Heart Association developed a definition of ideal cardiovascular health that includes health behaviors (HB) and health factors (HF). The association between this Health Score (HS) and measures of vascular health have yet to be evaluated.
Method: Data from the Firefighters and Their Endothelium (FATE) study were used. Study subjects were free of CV disease at entry and had baseline vascular assessment (flow mediated dilation (FMD), a measure of macrovascular function; hyperemic velocity time integral (VTI), a measure of microvascular function; and carotid intimal media thickness (cIMT), reflective of subclinical atherosclerosis) as well as risk factor evaluation. A subset of subjects completed a survey of their dietary and activity habits. Subjects were scored for HB with 1 point for each of smoking status (never), body mass index (<25kg/m2), physical activity (active), and produce consumption (>2 portions/day); HF of interest were smoking, total cholesterol (<5.2mmol/L), blood pressure (<120/80 mmHg), and fasting glucose (<5.6mmol/L). HB and HF were combined to determine a HS. Median cIMTs were compared across score categories using Kruskal Wallis tests; mean FMD and VTI were compared using ANOVA
Results: A total of 326 men (mean age 44.1 ±9.0 yrs) comprised the study. Only 18 participants had all 4 HF, 3 engaged in all HB; 200 subjects had a HS of 3 or 4. There was no difference in mean FMD across HB, HF or HS categories (all p>0.05). However, mean VTI increased and cIMT decreased with increasing HS (both p<0.0001). Both HF and HB were associated with increased VTI and decreased cIMT (all p-values <0.05).
Conclusions: Despite the fact that this population was young and free of overt disease, there was a low prevalence of ideal CV health. A higher HS was associated with improved microvascular function and less subclinical atherosclerosis, as demonstrated by increased VTI and decreased cIMT. As we have previously demonstrated in the FATE study that higher VTI is associated with decreased risk of incident cardiovascular events, these findings suggest that HS may predict CV outcomes
- © 2011 by American Heart Association, Inc.