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ERIC Number: EJ912608
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Nov
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0360-7283
Can Racial Disparity in Health between Black and White Americans Be Attributed to Racial Disparities in Body Weight and Socioeconomic Status?
Kahng, Sang Kyoung
Health & Social Work, v35 n4 p257-266 Nov 2010
Few studies have examined to what extent racial disparities in chronic health conditions (CHCs) are attributable to racial differences in body weight (measured as body mass index [BMI]) and socioeconomic status (SES) among older adults. To address this gap, using longitudinal data from the Health and Retirement Study, the current study examined risk factors of CHC trajectory including race, BMI, and SES. The sample consists of 22,560 in 1998, 20,825 in 2000, and 19,004 in 2002. Data analysis was done through latent growth curve modeling. As expected, older adults presented an increasing trajectory of CHCs over time. Black Americans presented a significantly more negative CHC trajectory than did their white counterparts, confirming racial disparity in health over time. Consequent hierarchical analyses revealed that racial disparity in CHC trajectory can be explained by racial disparity in BMI and that racial disparity in BMI can be attributed to racial disparity in SES. Because low SES is closely related to unhealthy diet and negative health behaviors that may subsequently lead to obesity and chronic health conditions, the findings suggest that to address racial disparity in CHCs, it is important for social workers to continuously try to mitigate racial inequality in SES.
National Association of Social Workers (NASW). 750 First Street NE Suite 700, Washington, DC 20002. Tel: 800-227-3590; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A