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Migration Selection, Protection, and Acculturation in Health: A Binational Perspective on Older Adults

Author

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  • Fernando Riosmena

    ()

  • Rebeca Wong
  • Alberto Palloni

Abstract

In this article, we test for four potential explanations of the Hispanic Health Paradox (HHP): the “salmon bias,” emigration selection, and sociocultural protection originating in either destination or sending country. To reduce biases related to attrition by return migration typical of most U.S.-based surveys, we combine data from the Mexican Health and Aging Study in Mexico and the U.S. National Health Interview Survey to compare self-reported diabetes, hypertension, current smoking, obesity, and self-rated health among Mexican-born men ages 50 and older according to their previous U.S. migration experience, and U.S.-born Mexican Americans and non-Hispanic whites. We also use height, a measure of health during childhood, to bolster some of our tests. We find an immigrant advantage relative to non-Hispanic whites in hypertension and, to a lesser extent, obesity. We find evidence consistent with emigration selection and the salmon bias in height, hypertension, and self-rated health among immigrants with less than 15 years of experience in the United States; we do not find conclusive evidence consistent with sociocultural protection mechanisms. Finally, we illustrate that although ignoring return migrants when testing for the HHP and its mechanisms, as well as for the association between U.S. experience and health, exaggerates these associations, they are not fully driven by return migration-related attrition. Copyright Population Association of America 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Fernando Riosmena & Rebeca Wong & Alberto Palloni, 2013. "Migration Selection, Protection, and Acculturation in Health: A Binational Perspective on Older Adults," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 50(3), pages 1039-1064, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:demogr:v:50:y:2013:i:3:p:1039-1064
    DOI: 10.1007/s13524-012-0178-9
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Barbieri, Paolo Nicola, 2016. "The heterogeneity in immigrants unhealthy assimilation," MPRA Paper 71560, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Giuntella, Osea & Stella, Luca, 2016. "The Acceleration of Immigrant Unhealthy Assimilation," IZA Discussion Papers 9664, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. repec:spr:demogr:v:54:y:2017:i:5:d:10.1007_s13524-017-0604-0 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Mike Vuolo & Kenneth Ferraro & Patricia Morton & Ting-Ying Yang, 2014. "Why Do Older People Change Their Ratings of Childhood Health?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(6), pages 1999-2023, December.
    5. Noreen Goldman & Anne Pebley & Mathew Creighton & Graciela Teruel & Luis Rubalcava & Chang Chung, 2014. "The Consequences of Migration to the United States for Short-Term Changes in the Health of Mexican Immigrants," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(4), pages 1159-1173, August.
    6. Erika Arenas & Noreen Goldman & Anne Pebley & Graciela Teruel, 2015. "Return Migration to Mexico: Does Health Matter?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(6), pages 1853-1868, December.
    7. Gorman, Bridget K. & Lariscy, Joseph T. & Kaushik, Charisma, 2014. "Gender, acculturation, and smoking behavior among U.S. Asian and Latino immigrants," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 110-118.
    8. Hiram Beltrán-Sánchez & Alberto Palloni & Fernando Riosmena & Rebeca Wong, 2016. "SES Gradients Among Mexicans in the United States and in Mexico: A New Twist to the Hispanic Paradox?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 53(5), pages 1555-1581, October.
    9. repec:eee:jhecon:v:54:y:2017:i:c:p:1-16 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Reynolds, Megan M. & Chernenko, Alla & Read, Jen'nan Ghazal, 2016. "Region of origin diversity in immigrant health: Moving beyond the Mexican case," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 166(C), pages 102-109.
    11. repec:dem:demres:v:38:y:2018:i:52 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Fernando Riosmena & Randall Kuhn & Warren C. Jochem, 2017. "Explaining the Immigrant Health Advantage: Self-selection and Protection in Health-Related Factors Among Five Major National-Origin Immigrant Groups in the United States," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 54(1), pages 175-200, February.
    13. Hector Cebolla-Boado & Leire Salazar, 2016. "Differences in perinatal health between immigrant and native-origin children: Evidence from differentials in birth weight in Spain," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 35(7), pages 167-200, July.
    14. Bridget K. Gorman & Cynthia Novoa & Rachel Tolbert Kimbro, 2016. "Migration Decisions, Acculturation, and Overweight among Asian and Latino Immigrant Adults in the United States," International Migration Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(3), pages 728-757, September.
    15. repec:kap:poprpr:v:37:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s11113-017-9456-y is not listed on IDEAS
    16. repec:dem:demres:v:39:y:2018:i:7 is not listed on IDEAS

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