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ERIC Number: EJ889169
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jun
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 63
ISSN: ISSN-0022-1465
Big Boys and Little Girls: Gender, Acculturation, and Weight among Young Children of Immigrants
Van Hook, Jennifer; Baker, Elizabeth
Journal of Health and Social Behavior, v51 n2 p200-214 Jun 2010
Previous research fails to find a consistent association between obesity and acculturation for children. We theorize that social isolation shelters children of immigrants from the U.S. "obesiogenic" environment, but this protective effect is offset by immigrant parents' limited capacity to identify and manage this health risk in the United States. We further theorize that these factors affect boys more than girls. We use data from over 20,000 children in the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study Kindergarten Cohort and find that boys whose parents were raised outside the United States weighed more and gained weight faster than any other group. However, within this group, sons of low English-proficient parents gained weight more slowly than sons of English-proficient parents. The results thus suggest that two dimensions of low acculturation--foreign place of socialization and social isolation--affect children's weight gain in opposite directions and are more important for boys than girls. (Contains 3 tables, 4 figures and 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A