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Attending HBCUs May Reduce Risk for Midlife Health Issues: Study

African Americans who attend historically Black colleges and universities may be at lower risk for health problems later in adulthood compared to their Black counterparts who attend predominantly white institutions, a recent study found.

The study, led by Ohio State University sociology professor Cynthia Colen, also found that Black adults who had enrolled in HBCUs had a 35% lower probability of developing metabolic syndrome by midlife compared to Black adults who enrolled in predominantly white schools, the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education reported.

Metabolic syndrome is defined as when a person has at least three health conditions that raise the risk for heart disease and other problems, such as strokes, high blood pressure and diabetes.

The researchers noted risk reductions can be achieved through changes in diet or exercise

The full study — titled “Racial Disparities in Health Among College-Educated African-Americans: Can HBCU Attendance Reduce the Risk of Metabolic Syndrome in Midlife?” — can be viewed on the American Journal of Epidemiology website.

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