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African Americans are known to have a higher rate of heart disease and stroke than whites, and a new study suggests that those excess risks emerge at a relatively young age.

Using data from a government health study, researchers found that African Americans between the ages of 35 and 44 had nearly twice the prevalence of cardiovascular disease — a history of heart attack, heart failure or stroke — than their white counterparts.

Extrapolating to the general U.S. population, the researchers estimate that just under 2 percent of white adults in that age group had ever been diagnosed with cardiovascular disease, versus just under 4 percent of African Americans.

The racial gap persisted among adults in their 40s and 50s, though it declined with each decade, until there was no significant difference after age 60.

Read more at Reuters

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$1.5 million grant to improve heart health of African Americans