Debt and Hypertension

According to a study done by the Northwestern University, being submerged in deep debt can result in high blood pressure for young adults.

For the study, the researchers studied 8,400 young adults between ages 24 and 32, and found the following results when it comes to the link between debt and overall health:

  • 20% of the respondents admitted that they would still be in debt even if they encashed all of their assets.
  • There was a high debt-asset ratio that was linked with high levels of perceived stress, depression, and worse self-reported overall health.
  • Among the participants, those who have high amounts of debt experienced a 1.4% increase in their diastolic blood pressure compared with those who have average debt. In another study, it was concluded that a 2-point increase in blood pressure is associated with a higher risk of hypertension and stroke – 17% and 15%, respectively.

The research has its limitations, though. Depression, general health and perceived stress were gauged by the participants themselves, which means that these are self-reported information which may or may not be as reliable. However, diastolic blood pressure was measured through a monitor, which means that the third bullet would be accurate and valid.


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