Binge Drinking and Alcohol-Related Problems Among U.S.-Born Asian Americans

Department of Psychology, University of Maryland–College Park, MD, USA.
Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology (Impact Factor: 1.36). 06/2012; 18(3):219-27. DOI: 10.1037/a0028422
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Binge drinking (five drinks or more in a 2-h sitting for men or four or more drinks in a 2-h sitting for women) and alcohol-related problems are a growing problem among Asian American young adults. The current study examines the sociocultural (i.e., generational status and ethnic identity) determinants of binge drinking and alcohol-related problems across U.S.-born, young-adult, Asian American ethnic groups. Data were collected from 1,575 Asian American undergraduates from a public university in Southern California. Chinese Americans consisted of the largest Asian ethnicity in the study, followed by Vietnamese, Filipino, Korean, South Asian, Japanese, Multi-Asian, and "other Asian American." Participants completed a web-based assessment of binge drinking, alcohol-related problems, ethnic identity, descriptive norms (i.e., perceived peer drinking norms), and demographic information. An analysis of variance was used to determine potential gender and ethnic differences in binge drinking and alcohol-related problems. Negative binomial regression was selected to examine the relationship between the predictors and outcomes in our model. There were no gender differences between Asian American men and women in regards to binge drinking; however, men reported more alcohol-related problems. Japanese Americans reported the highest number of binge-drinking episodes and alcohol-related problems, followed by Filipino and Multi-Asian Americans (e.g., Chinese and Korean). Living off-campus; higher scores in descriptive norms; Greek status; and belonging to the ethnic groups Japanese, Filipino, Multi-Asian, Korean, and South Asian increased the risk of engaging in binge drinking. Quantity of alcohol consumed, Greek status, gender, Filipino, South Asian, other Asian, and lower ethnic identity scores were related to alcohol-related problems. Using one of the largest samples collected to date on sociocultural determinants and drinking among U.S.-born Asian American young adults, the findings highlight the significant variability in drinking patterns among Asian American ethnic groups.

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