Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Study: Students of Mixed Race Suffer More Health Problems

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Study: Students of Mixed Race Suffer More Health Problems

Article excerpt

CHAPEL HILL, N.C.

A new study that involved surveying 90,000 adolescent U.S. students showed that those who considered themselves to be of mixed race were more likely than others to suffer from depression, substance abuse, sleep problems, and various aches and pains.

Conducted by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the National Institutes of Health, the investigation found that adolescents of mixed race were more likely to have other health problems as well.

"It did not matter what races the students identified with, the risks were higher for all of them if they did not identify with a single race," says Dr. J. Richard Udry, principal author of a paper on the work appearing in the November issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

"Most of the risk items we assessed may be related to stress, and so we believe being of mixed race is a source of stress," Udry says. "From this work, we cannot identify further the sources of that stress. More research is needed to identify those sources and possibly suggest programs that might help biracial adolescents."

The new findings derive from data compiled as part of the UNC-based National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, the largest and most comprehensive survey of teen-agers ever conducted in the United States.

In the detailed surveys they completed, students could give more than one answer when asked about their race. …

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