Nativity and cigarette smoking among lower income blacks: results from the Healthy Directions Study.
Blacks in the United States bear the greatest disease burden associated with cigarette smoking. Previous studies have shown that the rapidly increasing population of foreign-born Blacks has lower smoking rates compared to their native-born counterparts. However, less is known about whether cigarette smoking among Blacks varies by region of birth (US, Africa, or the Caribbean), generational status, or acculturation. We examined the association between nativity and cigarette smoking among 667 Black adult men and women enrolled in the Harvard Cancer Prevention Program project. In multi-variable analyses, US-born Blacks were more likely to be smokers compared to those born in the Caribbean (OR = 0.16, 95% CI 0.08, and 0.34) or in Africa (OR = 0.24, 95% CI 0.08, and 0.74). Language acculturation was positively associated with cigarette smoking (OR = 2.62, 95% CI 1.17, and 5.85). We found that US-born Blacks were more likely to be current cigarette smokers than those born in either Caribbean or African countries. Our findings highlight the importance of intervening early new Black immigrants to stem the uptake of cigarette smoking behaviors as individuals become acculturated.
Bennett, GG; Wolin, KY; Okechukwu, CA; Arthur, CM; Askew, S; Sorensen, G; Emmons, KM
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