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Ann Am Acad Pol Soc Sci. 2012 Sep;643(1):219-238.

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


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 article, the authors 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 age of immigrant mothers at migration moderate the association between immigrant status and child overweight? and (4) Does maternal obesity mediate the association between race/ethnicity and nativity and child overweight? 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.


immigrant children; international comparisons; overweight; race and ethnicity; socioeconomic status

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