, Volume 30, Issue 3-4, pp 209-214

Acculturation and Adolescent Health: Moving the Field Forward

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The racial and ethnic makeup of the population of the United States has changed more rapidly since 1965 than during any other period in history (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 2001). In July 2006, the U.S.’s minority population reached 100.7 million, which equates to one in three residents of the nation being a member of a minority group (U.S. Census Bureau 2007). Children and adolescents represent significant proportions of this heterogeneous population, with youth representing a third of the Latino population, nearly a third of the Asian/Pacific Islander (A/PI) population, and slightly more than a quarter of the American Indian/Alaskan Native (AI/AN) population (U.S. Census Bureau 2007). Large portions of these minority groups consist of new immigrants adjusting to life in the United States, bringing acculturation dynamics to the front of national awareness.

Minority youth have high rates of risk behaviors across a number of health indicators (e.g., violence, tobacco use

The findings and conclusions in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.