Smoking and the Asian American workforce in the National Latino and Asian American Study

Am J Ind Med. 2010 Feb;53(2):171-8. doi: 10.1002/ajim.20697.


Background: Smoking among the Asian American workforce has not been extensively researched. This study examines smoking prevalence among a nationally representative sample of Asian Americans with an emphasis on occupational classification.

Methods: Cross-sectional data come from the National Latino and Asian American Study. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to determine smoking prevalence by occupation, gender, and nativity, among 1,528 participants self-identifying as in the labor force.

Results: Blue collar workers reported the highest smoking prevalence (32%) followed by unemployed (19%), other (17%), service (14%), and white collar (10%). Among both employed males and females, blue collar workers had the highest prevalence (45% and 18%, respectively). By nativity, smoking was highest among blue collar workers for immigrants (25%) and highest among the unemployed for U.S. born (16%). Blue collar employment was significantly associated with being a current smoker (OR = 2.52; 95% CI: 1.23-5.16; P < 0.05) controlling for demographics (e.g., age, gender, ethnic group, nativity, etc.).

Conclusions: Findings reveal that smoking differs by occupation among Asian Americans. Future research should examine factors explaining differences while considering gender and nativity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Asian*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Employment*
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupations / statistics & numerical data
  • Prevalence
  • Smoking / ethnology*
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult