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'Hearts and Minds' Promotes Wellness; African Americans Living with Mental Illness Have Higher Risk for Other Illnesses.
Date:3/18/2010

ace these risk factors as well as additional disparities in access to and quality of health care.  

"Wellness is everyone's concern," said NAMI Executive Director Mike Fitzpatrick. "But it is especially urgent for people living with serious mental illness, including African Americans."

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) Office of Minority Health reports that:

  • In 2006, African American men were 30% more likely to die from heart disease, as compared to non-Hispanic white men.
  • African American women are 1.7 times as likely as non-Hispanic white women to be obese.
  • African Americans were 1.5 times as likely as non-Hispanic whites to have high blood pressure.

One recent study has now confirmed the existence of a "reciprocal link" between depression and obesity. People living with serious mental illness such as major depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia live on average 25 years
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SOURCE National Alliance on Mental Illness
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