U-M study: Mad whites more likely to die from heart issues than blacks

The Detroit News

A new study that looked at race and anger found that whites were more likely to die from cardiovascular problems than blacks who experienced the same level of anger.

Research from the University of Michigan School of Public Health released this week found that angry whites were 40 percent more likely than angry blacks to develop fatal cardiovascular conditions.

“This suggests whites are more vulnerable to the bad effects of hostility and anger on cardiovascular system,” said lead author Dr. Shervin Assari, research investigator at the Center for Research on Ethnicity, Culture and Health in the U-M School of Public Health and Department of Psychiatry in a press release. “On the contrary, blacks may have developed a type of resilience to a wide range of psychosocial risk factors including but not limited to hostility and anger.”

The study controlled for other factors, including age, education, smoking, drinking and other health issues. The effect on both men and woman was the same.

Assari tracked nearly 1,600 individuals from 2001 to 2011 to measure hostility and anger through the Institute for Social Research Americans’ Changing Life Study.

“This new finding is in line with our previous findings that education, self-rated health, depression, and sense of control over time are more important risk factors for whites than blacks,” Assari said in the press release. “So, whatever blacks’ resilience is, it is consistent and systematic, and works across the board.”