Role models and the psychological characteristics that buffer low-socioeconomic-status youth from cardiovascular risk

Edith Chen*, William K. Lee, Lisa Cavey, Amanda Ho

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations

Abstract

Little is understood about why some youth from low-socioeconomic-status (SES) environments exhibit good health despite adversity. This study tested whether role models and "shift-and-persist" approaches (reframing stressors more benignly while persisting with future optimism) protect low-SES youth from cardiovascular risk. A total of 163 youth, ages 13-16, completed role model interviews and shift-and-persist measures while cholesterol and inflammatory markers, interleukin-6 (IL-6), and C-reactive protein were assessed. Low-SES youth with supportive role models had lower IL-6. Low-SES youth high in shift-and-persist also had lower IL-6. Shift-and-persist partially mediated the interaction of SES and role models on IL-6. Benefits were not found among high-SES youth. Identifying psychological buffers in low-SES youth has implications for health disparities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1241-1252
Number of pages12
JournalChild development
Volume84
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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