Send to

Choose Destination
J Nerv Ment Dis. 2020 Feb;208(2):165-168. doi: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000001128.

Self-Rated Religiosity/Spirituality and Four Health Outcomes Among US South Asians: Findings From the Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health.

Author information

Department of Sociology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
National Consortium on Psychosocial Stress, Spirituality, and Health.
Harvard/MGH Center on Genomics, Vulnerable Populations, and Health Disparities.
Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois.
University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, San Francisco, California.


Almost no research exists on the relationship between religiosity/spirituality (R/S) and health in the US South Asian population. Using data from the joint Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health and Mediators of Atherosclerosis Among South Asians Living in America Study (MASALA), this article examined associations between self-rated R/S and self-rated health, emotional functioning, trait anxiety, and trait anger in a community-based sample (n = 933) from the Chicago and San Francisco Bay areas. Ordinary least squares regression was used to analyze categorical differences in levels of R/S and ordinal trends for R/S, adjusting for potential confounders. Being slightly or moderately religious/spiritual was associated with lower levels of self-rated health compared with being very religious/spiritual, and being slightly or moderately religious/spiritual was associated with higher levels of anxiety. In both cases, there was no significant difference between very religious/spiritual individuals and non-religious/spiritual individuals, suggesting a curvilinear relationship. Self-rated R/S was not significantly associated with emotional functioning or anger. In sum, high-R/S and low-R/S individuals had salutary associations with self-rated health and anxiety compared with individuals with slight/moderate levels of R/S. It is important for clinicians and policy makers to recognize the role R/S can play in the health status of South Asians living in the United States.

[Available on 2021-02-01]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wolters Kluwer
Loading ...
Support Center