Category Archives: Recently Published

Helpful algorithm for quantifying cardiometabolic risk may help to motivate an individual’s commitment to prevention and intervention

Harvard Pop Center Director Lisa Berkman and affiliated researcher Orfeu Buxton have co-authored a study that presents a way to quantify cardiometabolic risk using modifiable, non-self-reported risk factors which may help to motivate an individual’s commitment to prevention and intervention. The study has been published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Are Adolescent Smokers Using E-Cigarettes to Help Them Quit?

One of our RWJF Health & Society Scholars, Adam Lippert, PhD, has recently published a paper on which adolescent subgroups are using e-cigarettes and whether they are using them to help them quit smoking. The study has been published in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

The Impact of Childhood Social Disadvantage

How does social disadvantage in childhood correlate to cardiometabolic function and chronic disease status 40 years down the line? RWJF alumna Amy Non, along with Pop Center faculty members Ichiro Kawachi, Matthew Gilman, and Laura Kubzansky, take a look at how adverse social environments in early life play out across the life course. The study has been published in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

Older American workers more likely to be depressed after job loss than their European counterparts

In support of a recent study on job loss and depression in the USA and Europe published in the International Journal of Epidemiology and reported by CBS News, Harvard Pop Center Director Lisa Berkman has written a commentary. The HSPH researchers and their colleagues found that older American workers (aged 50-64) are more likely to experience depression after job loss than their European counterparts. In Berkman’s commentary, The hidden and not so hidden benefits of work: identity, income and interaction, she discusses three kinds of loss that may be central to affecting health and well-being.

Can friends help friends quit smoking?

According to a new study published in  Journal of Health and Social Behavior and co-authored by RWJF alum Steven Haas, adolescents tend to be more powerful in influencing their friends to start smoking than in helping them to quit. “In order to become a smoker, kids need to know how to smoke, they need to know where to buy cigarettes and how to smoke without being caught, which are all things they can learn from their friends who smoke,” said Haas. “But, friends are unlikely to be able to provide the type resources needed to help them quit smoking.” The good news? If we can develop those kind of resources, aim them specifically at teens, and then leverage the power of peer influence, we could make great progress in helping teens quit smoking. 

Debt hurts more than just your credit rating

A recent study led by former RWJF scholar Elizabeth Sweet found that high student debt leads to a greater incidence of high blood pressure and depression in people ages 24-32. The study was featured in both Time and Forbes. With regard to cultural messages regarding an individual’s responsibility for debt, Sweet pointed out that debt, while often impossible to avoid, is stigmatized by our society. “[Debt] is going to be a way of life,” she saidwhich means that prevention and treatment of the associated adverse health effects is all the more important.

Self-confidence of Fukushima mothers lower after nuclear power plant disaster

A first look at maternal self-confidence after experiencing a nuclear power accident co-authored by former Harvard Pop Center director and current affiliated faculty member Michael R. Reich suggests that such disasters do lower maternal self-confidence, which can lead to an increase in interpersonal problems and depression.