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The Role of Discrimination and Acculturative Stress in the Physical Health of Mexican-Origin Adults

Citation

Finch, Brian Karl; Hummer, Robert A.; Kol, Bohdan; & Vega, William A. (2001). The Role of Discrimination and Acculturative Stress in the Physical Health of Mexican-Origin Adults. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 23(4), 399-429.

Abstract

The authors propose that perceived discrimination has an effect on self-reported health statuses, which are known to affect future morbidity and mortality. A sample of 3,012 Mexican-origin adults from the Mexican American Prevalence and Services Study in California is utilized to test this hypothesis. Dependent variables include a self-rating of health and a count of self-reported chronic conditions; the key independent variable is a scale of overall discrimination specific to one’s Mexican origin. Results indicate that discrimination is related to poor physical health—net of controls for acculturation stress, national heritage, sociodemographic variables, and social support. Depression is identified as a major mechanism through which discrimination may affect physical health. Notably, job market stress/discrimination has a very strong association with poorer physical health, net of depression. Individual-level effects of discrimination found in this study, as well as institutional-level conditions and contextual effects, should be treated as crucial to future studies of individual-level physical health differentials.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0739986301234004

Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences

Author(s)

Finch, Brian Karl
Hummer, Robert A.
Kol, Bohdan
Vega, William A.

Year Published

2001

Volume Number

23

Issue Number

4

Pages

399-429

Reference ID

8410