Smoking in Maywood: The unhealthy southern migrant hypothesis among African Americans

Gary King, Anthony Polednak, Richard Cooper, Robert Bendel, Abigail Woodroffe, Loic Josseran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: This paper examines the "unhealthy Southern migrant" hypothesis with regard to cigarette smoking among African Americans. Methods: Using data collected in 1992 from a sample of 1,518 African Americans in Maywood, Illinois, as part of the International Collaborative Study of Hypertension in Blacks, logistic regression analysis was conducted to examine and compare smoking behavior and sociodemographic characteristics of Southern and Midwestern-born respondents. Results: African Americans born in the South were less likely (OR = .69, Cl = 95%, 0.53, 0.90) to be smokers than those born in the Midwest, after controlling for other sociodemographic variables, prior smoking status, and age of arrival to Maywood. Conclusions: The results do not support the "unhealthy Southern migrant" hypothesis, with regard to cigarette smoking, and indicate the need to identify factors that protect Southern-born African-American migrants from smoking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)540-547
Number of pages8
JournalEthnicity and Disease
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Epidemiology


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