A bi-national comparative study of health behaviors of Koreans in South Korea and Korean Americans in California.

Abstract

Few studies have compared health behaviors of Koreans in their home country and Korean Americans. Using 2009 data from the Community Health Survey (South Korea) and the California Health Interview Survey (USA), we compared native Koreans and Korean Americans, grouped by level of acculturation, on prevalence of specific health behaviors and self-rated health, and conducted multiple logistic regression comparing the odds of these behaviors among the groups adjusted for demographic variables. While Korean Americans exhibit healthier behaviors than Koreans in some areas (e.g., reduced smoking and binge drinking in men, increased utilization of flu vaccinations), we also identified problem behaviors (e.g., increased body weight in Korean American men, uptake of alcohol drinking and smoking among Korean American women). Findings support the critical need for health promotion programs addressing these health behaviors to prevent future health problems among Korean Americans.

Authors

Ryu, So Yeon; Crespi, Catherine M; Maxwell, Annette E;

Keywords

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Asian Americans
  • California/ epidemiology
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison
  • Female
  • Health Behavior/ ethnology
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Republic of Korea/ ethnology
  • Young Adult

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