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Biol Psychol. 2011 May;87(2):234-40. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2011.03.002. Epub 2011 Mar 16.

Hostility, metabolic syndrome, inflammation and cardiac control in young adults: The Young Finns Study.

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  • 1Department of Behavioural Sciences, University of Helsinki, Finland.


We studied whether there is an association between hostility and cardiovascular heart disease (CHD) risk factors, such as the metabolic syndrome, systemic inflammation and autonomic cardiac control. Participants were 912 women and 712 men aged 15-30 when hostility was measured in 1992. Metabolic syndrome was assessed 9years later in 2001 using 3 definitions: the National Institute of Health Adult Treatment Panel III criteria (NCEP), the European Group for the Study of Insulin Resistance criteria (EGIR), and the International Diabetes Federation criteria (IDF). C-reactive protein (CRP) defined in 2001 was the marker of inflammation. Cardiac control indices were from EGC recording. In women, hostility predicted increased risk of metabolic syndrome (EGIR, and the IDF definitions, ORs = 1.34, 1.35, p < 0.05), and higher levels of inflammation (β = 0.09, p < 0.01). We concluded that hostility is associated with metabolic syndrome and systemic inflammation in women and these conditions may be factors linking hostility to CHD.

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