Introduction: Generation 1.5, immigrants who moved to a different country before adulthood, are hypothesized to have unique cognitive and behavioral patterns. We examined the possible differences in cigarette smoking between Asian subpopulations who arrived in the United States at different life stages. Methods: Using the Asian subsample of the 2015 Tobacco Use Supplement to the Current Population Survey, we tested this Generation 1.5 hypothesis with their smoking behavior. This dataset was chosen because its large sample size allowed for a national-level analysis of the Asian subsamples by sex, while other national datasets might not have adequate sample sizes for analysis of these subpopulations. The outcome variable was defined as whether the survey respondent had ever smoked 100 cigarettes or more, with the key independent variable operationalized as whether the respondent was: 1) born in the United States; 2) entered the United States before 12; 3) entered between 12 and 19; and 4) entered after 19. Logistic regressions were run to examine the associations with covariates including the respondent's age, educational attainment, and household income. Results: Asian men who entered before 12 were less likely to have ever smoked 100 cigarettes than those who immigrated after 19; for Asian women, three groups (born in the United States, entered before 12, entered between 12 and 19) were more likely to have smoked 100 cigarettes than those who immigrated after 19. Conclusions: While Asian men who came to the United States before 12 were less at risk for cigarette smoking than those who immigrated in adulthood, the pattern was the opposite among Asian women. Those who spent their childhood in the United States were more likely to smoke than those who came to the United States in adulthood. These patterns might result from the cultural differences between US and Asian countries, and bear policy relevance for the tobacco control efforts among Asian Americans.
- Asian Americans
- Generation 1.5
- Social Determinants of Health
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