Early Socioeconomic Adversity, Youth Positive Development, and Young Adults’ Cardio-Metabolic Disease Risk

Citation

Wickrama, K. K.; O'Neal, C. W.; Lee, T. K.; & Wickrama, T. (2015). Early Socioeconomic Adversity, Youth Positive Development, and Young Adults' Cardio-Metabolic Disease Risk. Health Psychology.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Recent research suggests that psychosocial resources, including self-esteem, personality, and educational attainment, may be mechanisms explaining the socioeconomic variation in health risks. However, less research has examined this possibility over the early life course. METHOD: A nationally representative sample of 12,424 respondents with data collected over a 13-year period from National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health) was examined. This study utilized a cumulative measure of early socioeconomic adversity capturing multiple dimensions of adversity to test resource focused models in a structural equation framework estimating the influence of early adversity on young adults' (ages 25-34) risk for cardio-metabolic disease, as measured by metabolic and cardiovascular bio-markers, through psychosocial resources (i.e., self-esteem, personality, and educational attainment). Lastly, potential model differences by sex and race/ethnicity were examined. RESULTS: The findings showed that early adversity contributed to young adults' cardio-metabolic disease risk directly. Additionally, early adversity increased young adults' cardio-metabolic disease risk indirectly through its' negative influence on the development of youths' psychosocial resources: self-esteem, positive personality, and educational attainment. The association between psychosocial resources and young adults' cardio-metabolic disease risk differed for men and women and across racial/ethnic groups. CONCLUSIONS: These findings contribute valuable knowledge to existing research by elucidating how early adversity exerts an enduring long-term influence on young adults' cardio-metabolic disease risk directly and indirectly through psychosocial resources. Furthermore, this information suggests that effective intervention and prevention programs should focus on early adversity and the development of youths' psychosocial resources. (PsycINFO Database Record

URL

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25798543

Notes

1930-7810

Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Health Psychology

Author(s)

Wickrama, K. K.
O'Neal, C. W.
Lee, T. K.
Wickrama, T.

Year Published

2015

Edition

2015/03/24

DOI

10.1037/hea0000208

Reference ID

5582