We examined the relationship between having a history of incarceration and being a current smoker using a national sample of noninstitutionalized Black adults living in the United States.
With data from the National Survey of American Life collected between February 2001 and March 2003, we calculated individual propensity scores for having a history of incarceration. To examine the relationship between prior incarceration and current smoking status, we ran gender-specific propensity-matched fitted logistic regression models.
A history of incarceration was consistently and independently associated with a higher risk of current tobacco smoking in men and women. Formerly incarcerated Black men had 1.77 times the risk of being a current tobacco smoker than did their counterparts without a history of incarceration (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.20, 2.61) in the propensity score-matched sample. The results were similar among Black women (prevalence ratio = 1.61; 95% CI = 1.00, 2.57).
Mass incarceration likely contributes to the prevalence of smoking among US Blacks. Future research should explore whether the exclusion of institutionalized populations in national statistics obscures Black-White disparities in tobacco smoking
Objective: To examine the impacts of long-standing obesity (BMIs ≥ 30.0 kg/m2) on health outcomes among Samoan and Tongan men (aged ≥ 18 years) in California using a life course perspective.
Design: Cross-sectional analysis of 103 males from the Pacific Islander Health Study (PIHS), a probability sample modeled after the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS).
Setting: Urban residential neighborhoods in San Mateo and Los Angeles counties using a multistage, cluster sample design.
Main Outcome Measures: BMI, diabetes, hypertension, total cholesterol, smoking, drinking, arthritis, gout and migraines.
Results: Bivariate analysis shows high rates of poor health outcomes distributed throughout the obese and non-obese sample. Logistic analysis finds that being obese does not significantly increase observed negative health outcomes. After controlling for socio-demographic characteristics, the presence of obesity results in non-significant findings for hypertension (OR=1.02; CI: .21, 4.91), and high cholesterol (OR=.52; CI: .10, 2.73), while obesity significantly reduces the risk of diabetes by 60% (OR=.40; CI: .14, 1.17). When applying disease counts, obese men have a significantly lower risk of reporting multiple health conditions (OR=.72; CI: .52, 1.00).
Conclusion: Overall, the health of Samoan and Tongan males in California is uniformly poor and obesity alone does not significantly increase risks of poor health outcomes. Using a life course perspective, the analysis offers new insights on the basic health of this understudied population.