Does the “healthy immigrant effect” extend to cognitive aging?

Terrence D. Hill, Jacqueline L. Angel, Kelly S. Balistreri

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

33 Scopus citations


We test whether the “healthy immigrant effect” extends to indicators of cognitive aging. We use six waves of data collected from the original cohort of the Hispanic Established Populations for the Epidemiologic Study of the Elderly to estimate a series of growth curve models to assess variations in cognitive functioning trajectories by nativity and age at migration. Our results suggest that the cognitive functioning trajectories of early (before age 20) and late life migrants (50 and older) are similar to those of the U.S.-born. We also find that those who immigrated between the ages of 20 and 49 tend to exhibit a slower rate of cognitive decline than the U.S.-born. Although our results suggest that the health advantage of Mexican immigrants extends to cognitive aging, additional research is needed to explore selection processes that are specific to age at migration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAging, Health, and Longevity in the Mexican-Origin Population
PublisherSpringer US
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781461418672
ISBN (Print)9781461418665
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences
  • General Psychology


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