Self-rated health among multiracial young adults in the United States: findings from the add health study


Objective: The multiracial adult population is one of the fastest growing segments of the U.S. population, yet much remains to be learned about multiracial health. Considerable research finds racial/ethnic disparities in self-rated health, however subgroups within the multiracial population have not been consistently described.

Design: We use data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health (Add Health) and multivariate logistic regression analyses to compare self-rated health of multiracial and monoracial young adults (n = 7880).

Results: Overall, there were no significant differences in poor self-rated health status of multiracial adults as a single group odds ratio 0.84 (95% CI: 0.52–1.36) compared to monoracial White adults. Analyses further revealed important variations in health-status by specific subgroups and show that some multiracial subgroups may not fit existing patterns of health disparities. For instance, Asian-White multiracial adults do not fit documented patterns of health disparities and report better health than monoracial Asian and monoracial White adults.

Conclusion: This study illustrates that the inclusion of specific multiracial categories provides evidence to enhance understanding of the pathways that are linked to health outcomes and the implications for health disparities.