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Adversities of acculturation? Prevalence of obesity among immigrants

  • Neeraj Kaushal

I study factors associated with prevalence of obesity among immigrants as the length of their stay in the US becomes longer. Using the National Health Interview Surveys for 1990-2004, I create 'synthetic cohorts' of immigrants that allow controlling for two important determinants of obesity: age at arrival and period of arrival in the US. I find that immigrants with a BA degree did not experience any change in obesity as their stay in the US advanced. Obesity among those without a BA degree, however, increased with duration of stay. Similarly, while some ethnic groups experienced increase in obesity with duration, others did not. For those who experienced increase in obesity with duration, the rise was higher during the first five years of residence than later and greater for those who arrived at a relatively young age. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.1368
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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Health Economics.

Volume (Year): 18 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 291-303

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Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:18:y:2009:i:3:p:291-303
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/jhome/5749

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  1. George J. Borjas, 2001. "Food Insecurity and Public Assistance," JCPR Working Papers 243, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  2. Zhang, Qi & Wang, Youfa, 2004. "Socioeconomic inequality of obesity in the United States: do gender, age, and ethnicity matter?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 58(6), pages 1171-1180, March.
  3. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2005. "Gender and Assimilation Among Mexican Americans," NBER Working Papers 11512, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. George J. Borjas & Lawrence F. Katz, 2005. "The Evolution of the Mexican-Born Workforce in the United States," NBER Working Papers 11281, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Antecol, Heather & Bedard, Kelly, 2005. "Unhealthy Assimilation: Why Do Immigrants Converge to American Health Status Levels?," IZA Discussion Papers 1654, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Guillermina Jasso & Douglas S. Massey & Mark R. Rosenzweig & James P. Smith, 2004. "Immigrant health: selectivity and acculturation," IFS Working Papers W04/23, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  7. LaLonde, Robert J & Topel, Robert H, 1991. "Immigrants in the American Labor Market: Quality, Assimilation, and Distributional Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 297-302, May.
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