Will the Latino Mortality Advantage Endure?

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Abstract

Persons of Mexican origin and some other Latino groups in the United States have experienced a survival advantage compared with their non-Latino White counterparts, a pattern known as the Latino, Hispanic, or epidemiological paradox. However, high rates of obesity and diabetes among Latinos relative to Whites and continued increases in the prevalence of these conditions suggest that this advantage may soon disappear. Other phenomena, including high rates of disability in the older Latino population compared with Whites, new evidence of health declines shortly after migration to the United States, increasing environmental stressors for immigrants, and high-risk values of inflammatory markers among Latinos compared with Whites support this prediction. One powerful counterargument, however, is substantially lower smoking-attributable mortality among Latinos. Still, it is questionable as to whether smoking behavior can counteract the many forces at play that may impede Latinos from experiencing future improvements in longevity on a par with Whites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-282
Number of pages20
JournalResearch on Aging
Volume38
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

Keywords

  • future survival
  • Hispanic paradox
  • Latino

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