|Title||Race, Educational Attainment, and Sustained High Body Mass Index over 24 Years of Follow-up in Middle-Aged and Older Adults.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2023|
|Authors||Assari, S, Cobb, S, Najand, B, Zare, H, Sonnega, A|
|Journal||J Racial Ethn Health Disparities|
BACKGROUND: Educational attainment has been linked to reduced risk of health problems such as obesity, but research suggests that this effect may be weaker for non-Hispanic Black individuals compared to non-Hispanic White individuals, a pattern known as minorities' diminished returns (MDRs).
OBJECTIVES: This study is aimed at examining the differential association between educational attainment and sustained high body mass index (BMI) among non-Hispanic Black and non-Hispanic White middle-aged and older adults in the USA.
METHODS: Using data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) spanning 1992-2016, we analyzed a national sample of 35,110 individuals, including 7766 non-Hispanic Black and 27,344 non-Hispanic White individuals. We used logistic regression models to examine the relationship between educational attainment, race, and sustained high BMI, while controlling for age, sex, and marital status at baseline.
RESULTS: Approximately 30.6% of the sample (n = 10,727) had sustained high BMI, while 69.4% (n = 24,383) had sustained low BMI over the period of follow-up. Higher levels of educational attainment were associated with a lower risk of sustained high BMI. We also found, however, that the protective effects of education against sustained high BMI were weaker for non-Hispanic Blacks compared to non-Hispanic Whites.
CONCLUSION: Our findings suggest that the protective effects of educational attainment against sustained high BMI may be more robust for non-Hispanic Whites than for non-Hispanic Blacks. Further research should explore whether these results are found in other racial and ethnic minorities and whether potential life history experiences may contribute to these disparities.
|PubMed Central ID||4343178|