206500 Assessing associations between acculturation and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors in a community sample of Mexican-American women living in the border region of San Diego, California

Monday, November 9, 2009

Jessica Jimenez, MA , Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Guadalupe Ayala, PhD, MPH , Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Christina L. Wassel, PhD , Department of Family and Preventive Medicine UC-San Diego, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, CA
John P. Elder, PhD, MPH , Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Literature suggests that acculturation may play a critical role in explaining the Hispanic Paradox, which refers to Latinos having high rates of diabetes and obesity, lower SES, but yet experience lower CVD mortality than Caucasians. To that end, research investigating the influence of acculturation and health presents mixed results; however, recent findings suggest that higher levels of adaption to US culture are associated with greater risk for CVD. Using baseline data from the San Diego Prevention Research Center intervention survey and fitness data, we investigated the relationship between Mean Arterial Pressure (MAP), BMI, and acculturation in a sample of 328 Mexican-American women. Participants (mean age=41 yrs, 78% were foreign-born) provided demographic information. One reading of SBP and DBP pressure was taken, and the values for height and weight were an average of the second and third measurements. Acculturation was defined as >15 yrs. vs. ≤15 yrs. living in US. After adjusting for age, SES, and BMI, time lived in US was positively associated with MAP (b=.291 (95% CI (.047, .535), p=.020). Time spent in US was also positively associated with BMI (b =.332 (95% CI (088, .577), p=.008). These findings suggest that those women who have resided in the US for 15 years or longer have higher MAP and BMI than those women who have been living in the US for less than 15 years. Further research on socio-cultural, psychological, and behavioral responses to acculturating to US society is needed to understand how acculturation contributes to the Hispanic Paradox.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the effects of the acculturation process on CVD risk among Latinas living in the border region

Keywords: Latino Health, Chronic (CVD)

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: A second year doctoral student in the SDSU/UCSD JDP in Public (Health Behavior). Pre-training fellow in UCSD Integrated Cardiovascular Epidemiology Fellowship (NIH, T32 HL079891)
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.