Current Research Is Predicting More Than 50% Of American Adults Will Have Cardiovascular Disease by 2050

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By Sharon Franklin.

Current Research Is Predicting More Than 50% Of American Adults

Will Have Cardiovascular Disease by 2050

Is It Related to Their Environment ???

On March 27, 2024, the American Heart Association released new research stating that people who live in areas with social and environmental adversities may have up to twice the increased risk for developing heart disease and stroke. https://newsroom.heart.org/news/social-environmental-factors-may-raise-risk-of-developing-heart-disease-and-stroke.  In this study, environmental adversities included air and water pollution and potentially hazardous and/or toxic sites.  Dr. Sarju Ganatra, M.D., senior author stated, “This study is one of the first to examine the impact of both social and environmental factors in combination and looked at the complex interplay between them,”  

As reported on June 4, 2024 by Jen Christensen, CNN Health, Medical and Wellness Unit that further new research from the American Heart Association Forecasting the Burden of Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke in the United States Through 2050   https://professional.heart.org/en/science-news/forecasting-the-burden-of-cardiovascular-disease-and-stroke-in-the-us-through-2050   finds that approximately 61% of US adults will have cardiovascular disease by 2050. This is alarming because it has increased from 28 million in 2020, and now it is predicted that 45 million adults will have some type of cardiovascular disease by 2050. 

The biggest driver of this trend will be the large number of people who have or will develop high blood pressure, which makes them much more likely to develop dangerous problems like a heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular problems (i.e. heart attacks, atrial fibrillation or “a-fib”, heart failure and congenital heart disease).  By 2050, 22% of the US will be over the age of 65, and this aging population will be another factor contributing to these trends, because the older you get, the more likely you are to have heart problems.

By 2050, people who identify as Hispanic will make up about a quarter of the United States population and are projected to have the greatest population growth for cardiovascular disease or stroke, and people who identify as Black will be 14.4% and the number of people who identify as Asian will also increase to 8.6%, according to the US Census predictions https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/popproj.html   .  

The June 4, 2024 Heart Association report also offers a closer look at the heart health of children. It finds “concerning trends” in key risk factors, including a predicted increase in the number of kids living with obesity, in large part due to a lack of exercise and poor diet. The report projects that the number of American children with obesity will jump from 20.6% in 2020 to 33% in 2050, meaning 26 million kids will have obesity by that time.  The study also projected that the number of people with high cholesterol will decline due in part to the sharp increase in the number of people who take drugs called statins, which can reduce cholesterol.

So, What Can We Do Now?  The research suggests:

  1.  Prevention efforts to improve population health would be important, and would save America a significant amount of money.  (The costs including direct health care costs and productivity losses are expected to almost triple to more than $1.8 trillion by 2050.)
  • The creation of clinical and policy interventions specifically to help people of color, who are already disproportionally affected by heart problems and who tend to have less access to basic affordable health care.

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