To evaluate a conceptual model of the psychosocial pathways linking socioeconomic status and body mass index (BMI) among smokers.
A latent variable modeling approach was used to evaluate the interrelationships among socioeconomic status, perceived neighborhood disadvantage, social support, negative affect, and BMI among smokers recruited from the Houston metropolitan area (N = 424).
A total of 42.4% of participants were obese, with the highest prevalence of obesity among Latinos followed by African Americans. Across all racial/ethnic groups, perceived neighborhood disadvantage, social support, and negative affect functioned as pathways linking socioeconomic status and BMI.
Findings indicate the need for interventions that target obesity among socioeconomically disadvantaged smokers and provide potential intervention targets for the prevention and treatment of obesity.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In recent years, theorists and researchers have disagreed about the relationship between social support and mental health. Some believe that support is a direct provoking agent (i.e. lack of support constitutes strain), whereas others maintain that support is a vulnerability factor moderating the effect of life stress. Focusing on clinical depression, the article reviews the arguments and evidence supporting a strain hypothesis of social support versus a vulnerability hypothesis. Reanalyzing cross-classified data from 12 community studies of clinical depression, the study shows that the choice of model depends on the specification of functional form of the stress-clinical depression relationship. The linear probability specification suggests a vulnerability hypothesis, whereas the logit and probit specifications support a strain hypothesis. However, theoretical and statistical arguments tend to favor a logit or probit specification, and an additional analysis of data from Brown and Harris [Social Origins of Depression: A Study of Psychiatric Disorder in Women. The Free Press, New York, 1978] supports these arguments. Thus, the study concludes that the strain hypothesis of social support is more consistent with the available data.
Social Science & Medicine 09/1993; 37(3):331-42. DOI:10.1016/0277-9536(93)90264-5 · 2.89 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Psychosocial resources, which include optimism, coping style, a sense of mastery or personal control, and social support, influence the relationship between SES and health. To varying degrees, these resources appear to be differentially distributed by social class and related to health outcomes. Such resources may partially mediate the impact of SES on health. For example, environments that undermine personal control may have an impact on chronic arousal and the corresponding development of disease, such as CHD. Psychosocial resources may also moderate the impact of SES on health. For example, a large number of positive social relationships and a few conflictual ones may buffer individuals against the adverse effects of SES-related stress. These psychosocial resources are moderately intercorrelated, and so a research strategy that explores their coherence as a psychosocial profile that promotes resilience to stress is tenable and merits empirical examination. The erosion of these resources as one moves lower on the SES scale and specific factors that contribute to such erosion are discussed.
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 11/1999; 896(1):210 - 225. DOI:10.1111/j.1749-6632.1999.tb08117.x · 4.38 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the past 15 years, we have seen a marked increase in research on socioeconomic status (SES) and health. Research in the first part of this era examined the nature of the relationship of SES and health, revealing a graded association; SES is important to health not only for those in poverty, but at all levels of SES. On average, the more advantaged individuals are, the better their health. In this paper we examine the data regarding the SES-health gradient, addressing causal direction, generalizability across populations and diseases, and associations with health for different indicators of SES. In the most recent era, researchers are increasingly exploring the mechanisms by which SES exerts an influence on health. There are multiple pathways by which SES determines health; a comprehensive analysis must include macroeconomic contexts and social factors as well as more immediate social environments, individual psychological and behavioral factors, and biological predispositions and processes.
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 02/1999; 896(1):3-15. DOI:10.1111/j.1749-6632.1999.tb08101.x · 4.38 Impact Factor
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