A new study co-led by Simon Fraser University health sciences professor Scott Lear provides further evidence of the link between depressive symptoms and an increased risk of heart disease and early death.
The global study tracked 145,862 middle-aged participants from 21 countries and found a 20 per cent increase in cardiovascular events and death in people with four or more depressive symptoms. The risks were twice as high in urban areas — where the majority of the global population will be living by 2050 — and more than double in men.
Depression and mental health issues are highly prevalent in Canada. One in five Canadians will experience a mental health problem during their lifetime and eight per cent will experience a major depressive event.
Lear says the results are timely as experts anticipate an increase in the number of people dealing with mental health issues as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.