Discrimination and health among Asian American immigrants: Disentangling racial from language discrimination

Hyung Yoo, Gilbert C. Gee, David Takeuchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

142 Scopus citations


We examined whether self-reported discrimination based on race and language was associated with the number of chronic health conditions among Asian American immigrants. We also examined whether these relationships were moderated by years in the United States. Data are from adults participating in an Asian American supplement to the 2001 Health Care Quality Survey. Language and racial discrimination in seeking health care were independently associated with increased number of chronic health conditions after controlling for age, sex, education, family income, health insurance, primary language, nativity, and ethnicity. Language discrimination was significantly associated with health conditions even with the presence of racial discrimination in the statistical model. Racial discrimination did not show a significant association in the full analytic model. The relationship between language discrimination and chronic conditions was stronger for Asian immigrants living in the USA 10 years or more compared to more recently arrived immigrants. Language discrimination may be an understudied type of discrimination associated with chronic illness among Asian Americans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)726-732
Number of pages7
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 2009


  • Asian American
  • Chronic conditions
  • Immigrants
  • Language discrimination
  • Racial discrimination
  • USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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