24 May 2019

Education and health

Scientists have understood how and why education affects the risks of stroke and heart attack

Svetlana Maslova, Hi-tech+

British researchers prove that the more years a person has spent on training, the lower his personal risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. And now scientists are ready to explain the reasons for this dependence.

Studies in the field of risks of cardiovascular diseases indicate that the duration of a person's lifelong learning is associated with a predisposition to the development of stroke, heart attack and other diseases. Now a group of scientists from the UK explains that in 40% of cases, "protection" is explained by body mass index (BMI), blood pressure and smoking status.

To find out the relationship, the team used statistical and genetic analysis in two large cohorts. The work of Carter et al. Understanding the consequences of education inequality on cardiovascular disease: mendelian randomisation study published in BMJ.

In the first case, the team analyzed the data of more than 200 thousand people and compared the duration of education with BMI, blood pressure indicators and the presence of smoking habits. The second stage of research on a sample of more than a million people analyzed the differences in the genome associated with the duration of training.

Every additional 3.6 years of training were associated with a decrease in BMI by 1 kg and blood pressure by 3 mmHg, the observations showed.

And if BMI, blood pressure and smoking status explain about 40% of the relationship between the level of education and the risks of cardiovascular disease, then scientists associate the remaining reasons with awareness.

"Probably, such people visit doctors more often for prevention and turn to a specialist faster if there are complaints," the authors believe.

The researchers emphasize that only the duration of the participants' educational process was studied, and not their level of intelligence.

At the same time, most of the data was obtained from Europeans, so more research is needed to apply the findings to other ethnic groups.

The relationship between life expectancy (but not health status and morbidity) and intelligence was studied earlier (1, 2) – VM.

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