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Epidemiology. 1997 Mar;8(2):168-74.

Association among health habits, risk factors, and all-cause mortality in a black California population.

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Center for Health Research, Loma Linda University, School of Public Health, CA 92350, USA.


We evaluated dietary and other risk factors in a black California cohort. Baseline data were gathered in 1974 and 1976, and mortality follow-up continued through 1985. A study census questionnaire was returned from 3,299 subjects who lived in a household containing at least one Seventh-Day Adventist. Of these, 1,668 subjects also completed a detailed life-style and dietary questionnaire in 1976. Vital status was ascertained using church records and the California State death tapes. Mortality hazard ratios (HR; both sexes combined) across three increasing consumption levels were determined for nuts (1.00, 0.60, 0.56), fruits (1.00, 0.38, 0.57), and green salads (1.00, 0.54, 0.65). Consumption of meats appeared more hazardous for women, although there was no dose-response relation. Education (HR = 1.00, no college; 0.74, some college; 0.42, college graduate), male gender (HR = 1.55), diabetes mellitus (HR = 1.77), and hypertension (HR = 2.52) were independently associated with mortality, as was obesity, which had a curvilinear association in women and a linear association in men. Exercise was not associated with mortality after excluding those with morbidity at baseline. In summary, traditional risk factors operated with similar force in this black population. In addition, the frequent consumption of nuts, fruits, and green salads appears protective.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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