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Depression Research and Treatment
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 836542, 6 pages
Research Article

Relationship between Depressive Symptoms and Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors in African American Individuals

1Center for the Study of Chronic Illness and Disability, George Mason University, 4400 University Drive, MSN 5B7, Fairfax, VA 22030, USA
2Department of Military and Emergency Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD 20814, USA
3Department of Statistics, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 22030, USA

Received 25 January 2011; Revised 3 May 2011; Accepted 17 June 2011

Academic Editor: Janusz K. Rybakowski

Copyright © 2011 Ali A. Weinstein et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. To examine the relationship between depressive symptoms and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors in a group of African American individuals. Design. A nonrandom sample of 253 (age 43.7 ± 11.6 years; 37% male) African American individuals was recruited by advertisements. Data were obtained by validated questionnaires, anthropometric, blood pressure, and blood sample measurements. Results. Regression analyses were performed to assess the relationship between depressive symptoms and CVD risk factors controlling for socioeconomic status indicators. These analyses demonstrated that those with higher levels of depressive symptoms had larger waist-to-hip ratios, higher percent body fat, higher triglycerides, and were more likely to be smokers. Conclusions. It has been well documented that higher levels of depressive symptoms are associated with higher CVD risk. However, this evidence is derived primarily from samples of predominantly Caucasian individuals. The present investigation demonstrates that depressive symptoms are related to CVD risk factors in African American individuals.