Northwestern Events Calendar


Anthropology Colloquium: Amy Non, University of California - San Diego

When: Monday, March 18, 2019
3:00 PM - 5:00 PM  

Where: 1810 Hinman Avenue, 104, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Nancy Hickey   847.467.1507

Group: Anthropology Colloquia and Events

Anthropology Department

Category: Lectures & Meetings


Stress embodiment and resilience among Hispanic immigrant mothers and their children

Hispanic immigrants represent the largest and fastest growing ethnic minority in the US. Thus an important research focus for the future health of the US is to determine factors that influence the declining health of immigrants with more time lived in the US, and across generations. Much research has focused on the adoption of poorer health behaviors with acculturation, but less attention has been focused on the role of psychosocial stress experienced by immigrant mothers and by their young children. Through extensive structured interviews with mothers and children (n=82; children aged 6-13) across two different time points spanning the last US presidential election, we examined psychosocial stress exposures and biological outcomes (cortisol and epigenetics) among Hispanic immigrant mothers and their children in Nashville, TN. We find that mothers report high levels of depressive symptoms (24.3%), anxiety symptoms (35.1%), and moderate perceived stress (86.5%) since the Presidential election. We also see significantly decreased levels of optimism in mothers over time (mean difference = -3.4; p-value < 0.001). Ongoing analyses are exploring hormonal and epigenetic mechanisms through which these stressors may become biologically embedded in their US-born children to potentially predispose them to higher risk for cardiometabolic diseases and mental health disorders.

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