A Nationwide Study of Discrimination and Chronic Health Conditions among Asian Americans

  • Gilbert Gee
  • Michael Spencer
  • Juan Chen
  • David Takeuchi


Objectives. We examined whether self-reported everyday discrimination was associated with chronic health conditions among a nationally representative sample of Asian Americans.
Methods. Data were from the Asian American subsample (n=2095) of the National Latino and Asian American Study conducted in 2002 and 2003. Regression techniques (negative binomial and logistic) were used to examine the association between discrimination and chronic health conditions. Analyses were conducted for the entire sample and 3 Asian subgroups (Chinese, Vietnamese, and Filipino).
Results. Reports of everyday discrimination were associated with many chronic conditions, after we controlled for age, gender, region, per capita income, education, employment, and social desirability bias. Discrimination was also associated with indicators of heart disease, pain, and respiratory illnesses. There were some differences by Asian subgroup.
Conclusions. Everyday discrimination may contribute to stress experienced by racial/ethnic minorities and could lead to chronic illness. (Am J Public Health.


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