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Did the 2016 presidential election affect the health of minorities?

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A UF Health study indicates population-level blood pressure increased after the election, especially among racial and ethnic minorities. Researchers didn't ask about political leanings.

A new study out of the University of Florida suggests that politics could have an adverse impact on your health.

It says population-level blood pressure — particularly among racial and ethnic minorities — might have increased following the 2016 national election.

Steven Smith, the lead author of the UF Health study published recently in the Journal Human Biology, even small changes in blood pressure put people at increased risk of a number of health factors.

"So, even relatively small increases that are sustained over time and blood pressure can have pretty profound effects in terms of increasing an individual's risk for having some of those adverse outcomes, including heart attacks and strokes," Smith said.

Smith says the trend was driven by a rise in blood pressure among women.

Racial and ethnic minorities such as Asians, Blacks and non-white Hispanics saw the highest increases.

"The people who seem to be most affected by that psychosocial stress were individuals, minority individuals, including non-Hispanic Blacks, and Mexican Americans," Smith said.

The study did not show any significant changes in blood pressure in non-Hispanic whites.

Researchers warn against drawing any conclusions on the party affiliation of those whose blood pressure rose, as the survey didn’t ask about political leanings.

The 2016 election was headlined by the presidential race between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump.

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Daylina Miller is a multimedia reporter for WUSF and Health News Florida, covering health in the Tampa Bay area and across the state.