Longitudinal effects of acculturation on alcohol use among vietnamese and cambodian immigrant women in the USA

Jeremy C. Kane, Renee M. Johnson, Courtland Robinson, David H. Jernigan, Tracy W. Harachi, Judith K. Bass

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Aims: Recent studies indicate that alcohol use is increasing among Asian American populations and that acculturation impacts alcohol use among immigrants in the USA. We investigated the longitudinal relationship between three domains of acculturation (traditionalism, biculturalism, assimilation) and alcohol use among 302 Vietnamese and Cambodian women in Washington State. Methods: Data were obtained from the Cross Cultural Families Project (CCF), a 5-year longitudinal investigation of a random sample of Vietnamese and Cambodian immigrant families living in Washington State. Alcohol use was measured with a three item scale assessing frequency and quantity of use, and binge drinking. Acculturation was measured with the Suinn-Lew Asian Self-Identity Acculturation Scale. Linear mixed effects regression models were estimated to assess the impact of acculturation on alcohol use among the overall sample and among a sub-sample of only women who consumed any alcohol. Results: A majority of the sample, 73.2%, reported no alcohol use. In the overall sample, none of the three acculturation domains were significantly associated with drinking. Among a sub-sample of only those who reported any alcohol use, however, a greater degree of traditional cultural identification (β = -0.94, SE= 0.44, P= 0.03) and a greater degree of biculturalism (β = -1.33, SE= 0.53, P =0.01) were associated with lower levels of use. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that acculturation did not impact alcohol use prevalence but that it did affect the drinking pattern among alcohol consumers. Clinicians should be cognizant that certain aspects of cultural identification are important contributors to drinking behavior among alcohol consumers in these populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberagw007
Pages (from-to)702-709
Number of pages8
JournalAlcohol and Alcoholism
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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