Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors and Health Outcomes Among American Indians in Oklahoma: the THRIVE Study

Valarie Blue Bird Jernigan, Marianna Wetherill, Jordan Hearod, Tvli Jacob, Alicia L. Salvatore, Tamela Cannady, Mandy Grammar, Joy Standridge, Jill Fox, Jennifer Spiegel, An Dina Wiley, Carolyn Noonan, Dedra Buchwald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Introduction: Limited available data document higher prevalences of cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors and health outcomes among American Indians (AIs) compared to other racial/ethnic groups. Methods: As part of a randomized control trial to improve tribal food and physical activity environments, our tribal-academic partnership surveyed a cross-sectional sample of American Indian adults (n = 513) to assess the prevalence of type 2 diabetes, obesity, hypertension, tobacco use, physical activity, and vegetable and fruit intake. Surveys were collected from April through May 2015. We used logistic regression to examine the association between CVD-related risk factors and health outcomes. Results: The prevalence of CVD-related outcomes was high, ranging from 25% for diabetes to 75% for low vegetable intake. The prevalence of diabetes, obesity, and hypertension tended to be higher among participants with any tobacco use compared to no tobacco use, but findings were not statistically significant. The prevalence of diabetes (prevalence ratio 2.1, 95% CI 1.4–3.2) and obesity (prevalence ratio 1.5, 95% CI 1.2–1.8) was higher among participants with low physical activity levels compared to recommended physical activity levels. Conclusions: CVD risk factors and health outcomes persist among American Indians even as some risks (e.g., smoking) appear to be stabilizing or even declining in the general US population. Efforts to include American Indians in national health surveys, implement broad reaching environmental and policy interventions, and address the social determinants of health are critical to the elimination of these disparities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1061-1068
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • American Indian
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Community-based participatory research
  • Diabetes
  • Native American
  • Obesity
  • Vegetable and fruit intake


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