Acculturation and physical activity in a working class multiethnic population

Kathleen Y. Wolin, Graham Colditz, Anne M. Stoddard, Karen M. Emmons, Glorian Sorensen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background.: Determinants of physical activity in minority populations remain under-explored. Acculturation is one proposed mechanism for the disparities that exist between racial and ethnic groups in health outcomes. Methods.: This cross-sectional study evaluated the relation of language acculturation and generation in the US since migration with leisure-time and occupational activity. A low-income, multiethnic urban population was recruited from Massachusetts small businesses (SB) (n = 1725) and health centers (HC) (n = 2205). Baseline data were collected between May 2000 and February 2002. Results.: Individuals with low acculturation reported leisure-time activity 3-5 MET hours/week lower than those who were highly acculturated (P < 0.05). Generation predicted leisure-time activity only in SB participants. In the HC, least acculturated participants reported occupational activity 10-12 MET hours/week higher than highly acculturated participants. In SB men, acculturation was inversely associated with occupational activity; in SB women, language acculturation was positively associated with occupational activity. Generation was not predictive of occupational activity. Conclusion.: Language acculturation and generation were positively associated with leisure-time activity. Language acculturation is also associated with occupational activity. Acculturation is important to consider when designing public health interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)266-272
Number of pages7
JournalPreventive Medicine
Volume42
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2006

Keywords

  • Acculturation
  • Immigrant
  • Physical activity

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