Poverty and InequalitySexual and Reproductive HealthFamily, Maternal & Child HealthMethodology

Exploring racial differences in the obesity gender gap

TitleExploring racial differences in the obesity gender gap
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsSeamans, MJ, Robinson, WR, Thorpe, R. J., J, Cole, SR, Laveist, TA
JournalAnn Epidemiol
Date PublishedJun
ISBN Number1047-2797
Accession Number25887701
Keywordsgender, Health disparities, Obesity, race, socioeconomic status

PURPOSE: To investigate whether the gender gap in obesity prevalence is greater among U.S. blacks than whites in a study designed to account for racial differences in socioeconomic and environmental conditions. METHODS: We estimated age-adjusted, race-stratified gender gaps in obesity (% female obese - % male obese, defined as body mass index >/=30 kg/m(2)) in the National Health Interview Survey 2003 and the Exploring Health Disparities in Integrated Communities-Southwest Baltimore 2003 study (EHDIC-SWB). EHDIC-SWB is a population-based survey of 1381 adults living in two urban, low-income, racially integrated census tracts with no race difference in income. RESULTS: In the National Health Interview Survey, the obesity gender gap was larger in blacks than whites as follows: 7.7 percentage points (ppts; 95% confidence interval (CI): 3.4-11.9) in blacks versus -1.5 ppts (95% CI: -2.8 to -0.2) in whites. In EHDIC-SWB, the gender gap was similarly large for blacks and whites as follows: 15.3 ppts (95% CI: 8.6-22.0) in blacks versus 14.0 ppts (95% CI: 7.1-20.9) in whites. CONCLUSIONS: In a racially integrated, low-income urban community, gender gaps in obesity prevalence were similar for blacks and whites.