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Race/ Ethnic and Nativity Disparities in Child Overweight in the United States and England

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Author Info

  • Melissa L. Martinson

    (Princeton University)

  • Sara McLanahan

    (Princeton University)

  • Jeanne Brooks-Gunn

    (Columbia University)

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    Abstract

    Child overweight is a growing problem in wealthy countries. There is also evidence that child overweight varies by race/ethnicity and socioeconomic status. In this paper we use data from two recent birth cohort studies in the United States and England to address four questions: 1) Are race/ethnic and immigrant status associated with child overweight? 2) Is the association between socioeconomic status and child overweight similar across race/ethnic and nativity subgroups? 3) Does the timing of mother’s migration moderate the association between immigrant status and child overweight? and 4) Does mother’s obesity mediate the association between race/ethnicity and nativity and child overweight? Our findings indicate that 1) race/ethnicity and immigrant status are risk factors for child overweight in both countries, 2) the influence of socioeconomic status differs by subgroup, 3) mother’s age at migration does not moderate the association, and 4) mother’s obesity mediates some of the race/ethnic disparities in child overweight.

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    File URL: http://crcw.princeton.edu/workingpapers/WP12-05-FF.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing. in its series Working Papers with number 1376.

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    Date of creation: Mar 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:pri:crcwel:wp12-05-ff

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    Related research

    Keywords: Overweight; Immigrant Children; Race and Ethnicity; International Comparisons; Socioeconomic Status;

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    1. Van Hook, Jennifer & Stamper Balistreri, Kelly, 2007. "Immigrant generation, socioeconomic status, and economic development of countries of origin: A longitudinal study of body mass index among children," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 65(5), pages 976-989, September.
    2. Heather Antecol & Kelly Bedard, 2006. "Unhealthy assimilation: Why do immigrants converge to American health status levels?," Demography, Springer, vol. 43(2), pages 337-360, May.
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