Many factors contribute to a person’s health, such as race, genetics, economic status, and geographic location of a individual. Many diseases are genetic in nature and therefore a person’s family’s disease history can be extremely important in determining whether or not he or she may be prone to certain adverse health issues or complications. Similar to genetics, a person’s race may also have a huge impact on the overall health that individual can expect to have. This could be due to the genetic preferences each specific race carries, as well as different environments and circumstances each race may experience. For example, a minority race can suffer from adverse health effects due to racism and the stress it causes, as described in the video, as well as better or worse healthcare offered to a certain race in a certain area. Also, if a disease is more common in one race over another, individuals of a certain race who tend to cluster together geographically will be even more at risk for spreading that disease among his or her community than if they were scattered among people of multiple races.
The health disparity I chose that Asian American males and Asian Americans in general are known to suffer more from is Type II Diabetes. I don’t believe that social determinants are the cause of an increased incidence of Type II Diabetes in Asian Americans but after reading about it, have found that genetics play a large role. The specific genetic reason for an increased incidence of this disease in Asian Americans was not mentioned in the articles I read, but the article on goldsea.com mentioned that Type II Diabetes occurs at a lower BMI in Asian Americans than it does in most other races. The chart above, taken from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, shows the percentage of individuals of a certain age and race who were diagnosed with diabetes in the years shown at the bottom. It shows that Asian Americans are diagnosed more than all races but African Americans males and females.
“Diabetes Type 2: Discriminatory Disease,” accessed May 29, 2015, http://goldsea.com/Text/index.php?id=1570.
“Diabetes Public Health Resource,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, accessed May 29, 2015, http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/statistics/prev/national/figraceethsex.htm.