For the last two to three decades Hispanics were discouraged to speak Spanish. The Hispanic children were differentiated from the Anglos in schools. For the last two to three decades Hispanics were discouraged to speak Spanish. (Schaefer, 242) Children were punished if they were caught speaking in Spanish within school premises. The ability of a person to adapt to the stressors is refereed as allostasis. This allostatic load factor is important to judge the proper health status. When an individual is exposed to adverse situations for a long time, it is normal for them to become vulnerable to such challenges involving physiological strain and such alterations lead to a deterioration in health conditions. Peek et al estimated in their empirical study (using logistic regression models and taking a sample from Texas) that there were “ disadvantages among US-born Mexican American in metabolic system scores… foreign-born Mexicans who had lived in the United States for 10 years or less were less likely than foreign-born Mexicans who had lived in the country for more than 10 years to have high allostatic load scores (62%vs42%)” (Peek et al, 942).
The acculturation factor was apparently not accounted for because the ability of adaptation to stress should be more among the new arrivals rather than the old ones who have had some time to adjust to the environment. The results show that the recent arrivals have better advantages in terms of health compared to the older ones who have stayed for a longer time in the United States. Their findings also show that the more the Hispanics have stayed in America their physiological changes have been negative and this shows deterioration in health function.
The study draws the conclusion that “ Hispanic immigrants may be healthier at the time of their immigration and then converge to native population levels as a result of the erosion of culture-related protective factors such as diet and other health behaviours and social support mechanisms” (Peek et al, 945). Such findings automatically reveal the negative impact that acculturation had on the Hispanic population of US. Li, Chick & Zinn, Absher, Graefe looks into the cultural homogeneity amongst ethnic groups.
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