Couples often have similar CV risk factors- JAMA study
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Married couples and domestic partners have been reported to share similar environmental exposures, adopt similar behavior patterns, and have similar transferable characteristics. However, the degree to which couples share similar levels of cardiovascular risk factors and behaviors is uncertain.

The objective of this study was to assess within-couple concordance of the American Heart Association–defined Life’s Simple 7 (LS7).

The LS7 risk factors and behaviors (smoking status, body mass index, exercise, diet, total cholesterol, blood pressure, and fasting glucose) were assessed by questionnaires, examinations, and laboratory tests. LS7 categories were scored as 2 for ideal, 1 for intermediate, or 0 for poor and summed to generate a CV health score.

Results:
-- The study included 10?728 participants (5364 couples): 7% were African American, 11% Hispanic, 21% Asian, and 54% White, age, 50 years for men and 47 for women.

-- For most couples, both members were in the ideal category or both were in a nonideal category. Concordance ranged from 53% for cholesterol to 95% for diet.

-- For the CV health score, in 79% of couples both members were in a nonideal category, which was associated mainly with unhealthy diet (94% of couples) and inadequate exercise (53% of couples).

-- However, in most couples, both members were in the ideal category for smoking status (60% of couples) and glucose (56%).

-- Except for total cholesterol, when 1 member of a couple was in the ideal category, the other member was likely also to be in the ideal category: the adjusted odds ratios for also being in the ideal category ranged from 1.3 for blood pressure to 10.6 for diet.

-- Concordance differed by ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and geographic location.

-- A 5-year longitudinal analysis of 2186 couples found modest changes in concordance of blood pressure (from 55% to 59% and fasting glucose from 64% to 59%) with no change in other factors.

Conclusively, in this study, high concordance of nonideal behaviors was found within couples; behavioral modification programs may benefit both the targeted and the nontargeted member of a couple.

Source: https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2772161
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