Clinical Characteristics and Lifestyle Behaviors in a Population-Based Sample of Chinese and South Asian Immigrants with Hypertension

Stella S. Yi, Lorna E. Thorpe, Jennifer M. Zanowiak, Chau Trinh-Shevrin, Nadia S. Islam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Asian Americans are the fastest growing racial/ethnic group in the United States. Chinese Americans and their counterparts in Chinese countries have been shown to have an elevated risk of stroke compared to non-Hispanic Whites, while South Asian Americans and their counterparts in South Asian countries have an elevated risk of heart disease. Exactly how cardiovascular disease morbidity varies by Asian subgroup, however, is not well understood. The purpose of this analysis was to identify differences in clinical presentation and lifestyle behaviors between Chinese and South Asian American immigrants vs. non-Hispanic Whites in a representative sample of adults with self-report of physician-diagnosed hypertension. METHODS: Data on adults with self-reported hypertension were obtained from the New York City Community Health Survey 2009-2013 (Chinese: n = 555; South Asian: n = 144; non-Hispanic White: n = 5,987). RESULTS: Compared to non-Hispanic Whites with hypertension, foreign-born Chinese adults with hypertension were of a much lower socioeconomic profile and less likely to have private health insurance, and foreign-born Chinese and South Asian adults with hypertension had lower body mass index (BMI) values (25.3, 26.0 vs. 28.7kg/m2; P < 0.001). South Asians were younger than non-Hispanic Whites (mean age: 49.5 vs. 62.1 years; P < 0.001) and had poorer diet quality. BMI and diet quality results persisted in multivariable regression models. CONCLUSIONS: Findings from this study highlight important clinical distinctions in hypertensive Chinese and South Asian immigrant communities with respect to age and body size. Whether targeted and culturally appropriate approaches would reduce cardiovascular disease-related mortality in these groups needs further study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)941-947
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Hypertension
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Asian Americans
  • blood pressure
  • body mass index
  • health disparities
  • hypertension
  • immigrant health
  • urban health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Clinical Characteristics and Lifestyle Behaviors in a Population-Based Sample of Chinese and South Asian Immigrants with Hypertension'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this