Graduation Date


Document Type

Senior Thesis


Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Primary Major


Program Director

Andrea Boyle, PhD, FNAP

Thesis Advisor

Patricia Harris PhD, RN


As a future medical professional in the healthcare field, we continue to see patients admitted for cardiovascular issues. Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) remain the leading cause of mortality among adults living in the U.S. despite advances in treatment throughout the past century. A number of risk factors such as hypertension, obesity, smoking, and physical inactivity contribute to the significant rise of cardiovascular disease. Research data suggests that there is correlation between cardiovascular disease, low socioeconomic status, and diet. According to the American Phycological Association socioeconomic status is measured by income, educational status, and occupation, and has been shown to be closely related to the quality of one’s diet (APA, n.d.). The aim of this research is to provide evidence that low socioeconomic status is indeed a risk factor of cardiovascular disease and by integrating into the nursing practice may reduce the disparities amongst individuals, communities, and larger populations (Socioeconomic, n.d.).

This is a proposal for further research following a literature review of the incidence of cardiovascular disease in low socioeconomic neighborhoods. The literature review was conducted using Iceberg and includes articles that illustrate a correlational relationship between cardiovascular disease and a lack of access to healthy foods within these communities. Adults living in low socioeconomic neighborhoods do not have access to healthier foods such as organic fruits and vegetables and do not have a high enough income to purchase healthier foods. Data suggests that low income families purchase low cost items and spend their limited resources on saturated fats, trans fats, sweets, and processed foods, all of which contribute to an increased risk of heart disease.

This proposal outlines further study in this area by comparing the prevalence of cardiovascular disease within low socioeconomic communities and wealthy communities. Disease mapping of these areas is expected to show a direct comparison between these two factors. Additional investigation into the impact of diet and socioeconomic status on CVDs is warranted.

Available for download on Saturday, May 13, 2023