Cardiovascular Health by Life's Essential 8 and Associations With Coronary Artery Calcium in South Asian American Adults in the MASALA Study

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



The American journal of cardiology






South Asian Americans experience high cardiovascular disease risk. We evaluated the distribution and correlates of cardiovascular health (CVH) summarized by the Life's Essential 8 (LE8) score among South Asian adults. In participants of the MASALA (Mediators of Atherosclerosis in South Asians Living in America) study, the association of demographic, social, and cultural factors with LE8 score was evaluated with t tests and analysis of variance. The association of LE8 score with coronary artery calcium (CAC) was evaluated with adjusted logistic regression. There were 556 women (mean age 55.9 years [SD 8.7], mean LE8 score 67.2 (SD 12.6) and 608 men (mean age 57.5 years [SD 9.9], mean LE8 score 61.9 (SD 13.1). Among women and men, the LE8 CVH score was higher in participants with higher annual family income, higher educational attainment, and fewer depressive symptoms. Overall, there was 26% lower odds of any CAC for each 10-point higher LE8 score (odds ratios [OR] 0.74, 95% confidence intervals [CI] 0.66 to 0.83), with similar magnitude of association in women and men. Participants with a high LE8 CVH score had 82% lower odds of CAC (OR 0.18, 95% CI 0.09 to 0.33), and participants with an intermediate LE8 CVH score had 38% lower odds of CAC (OR 0.62, 95% CI 0.41 to 0.94) than did participants with a low LE8 CVH score, with similar findings stratified by gender. In conclusion, in this cohort of South Asian Americans, most adults had suboptimal CVH assessed by the LE8 score. Higher LE8 score correlated with lower odds of any CAC.


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