MODERATING EFFECT OF MINDFULNESS IN THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE RISK FACTORS
KIM, JEONG HYE
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Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading cause of death worldwide and in the United States. Weight loss, which is associated with blood pressure and blood glucose, is widely recommended to modify the CVDs risk factors. Among various methods, mindfulness has been extensively studied in improving psychological and physical health. There is some reported evidence that mindfulness based interventions are effective in improving CVDs risk factors. However, overall results are inconclusive. Therefore, more research examining the facets of mindfulness is necessary to understand the fundamental relationship between mindfulness and CVDs risk factors to clarify the effect of mindfulness. In addition, research into whether the relationship between different risk factors is moderated by mindfulness would provide further support of the independent effect of mindfulness on physical health. The current study hypothesized that higher mindfulness skills would correlate with physical well-being. Furthermore, it was hypothesized that mindfulness will moderate a relationship between BMI and other CVDs risk factors (e.g., individuals with higher BMI classification and higher mindfulness will show lower blood pressure compared to individuals at a similar BMI with lower mindfulness). Results found that body adiposity had an inverse relationship with overall mindfulness, and two of the four facets of mindfulness (Describing and Acting with awareness). In addition, the Describing subscale had a significant moderating effect; however, the relationship between body adiposity and systolic blood pressure was stronger rather than weaker with higher Describing skills.