CitationWickrama, Kandauda A. S.; Lee, Tae-Kyoung; & O'Neal, Catherine Walker (2015). Stressful Life Experiences in Adolescence and Cardiometabolic Risk Factors in Young Adulthood. Journal of Adolescent Health. vol. 56 (4) pp. 456-463
An increasing number of studies have provided evidence for the persistent influence of childhood/adolescent socioeconomic adversities on subsequent health outcomes. However, less is known about the distinct and additive influences of these early socioeconomic adversities and adolescents' own stressful life experiences on health outcomes in young adulthood.
We used data from 11,030 adolescents who participated in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health at Waves 1, 3, and 4 and provided biomarker data at Wave 4. Three early socioeconomic adversities (community socioeconomic adversity, family economic hardship, and low parental education) were evaluated. Adolescents' stressful transition to young adulthood was captured by six specific precocious life events as follows: early sex, early marriage or cohabitation, early leaving home, early pregnancy, early employment, and truncated education. A summary measure of cardiovascular and metabolic disease risk was assessed using nine biomarkers. Univariate, bivariate, and multivariate regression analyses were employed.
Early socioeconomic adversities and stressful life transition events were uniquely associated with elevated levels of cardiometabolic (CM) biomarkers and cumulative CM disease risk. For all of the biomarkers, young adults in high-adversity/stress groups were more likely to be in the high CM disease risk groups (>75th percentile) than in the low-adversity/stress groups. Conclusions
These findings provide support for the influence of multiple early socioeconomic adversities and adolescents' stressful life transitions on their CM disease risk as young adults. Increased efforts to prevent and mitigate these experiences may improve disease risks across a number of biomarkers.
Reference TypeJournal Article
Journal TitleJournal of Adolescent Health
Author(s)Wickrama, Kandauda A. S.
O'Neal, Catherine Walker