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Monday
Aug192013

High Debt May Be Harmful to Health 

David De Lossy/Photodisc/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- Students loans could hurt more than just your wallet. Young adults with high debt may be at risk for higher blood pressure and increased levels of stress and depression, according to a Northwestern University study.

Researchers found those with higher debt had a 1.3 percent increase in diastolic blood pressure. The increase is a significant amount -- a two point increase is associated with a higher risk of hypertension and a 15 percent higher risk of stroke. 

The study surveyed 8,400 young adults, ages 24 to 32 years old. Participants claimed debt ranging from "less than $1,000" to "$250,000 or more." Even if they sold all their posessions and liquidated their assets, 20 percent of participants said they'd still be in the red. 

Household debt has tripled since the 1980s, placing greater importance on understanding the health consequences debt brings, researchers said. 

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio