to date, little attention has been given to gender differences in the health of migrants relative to native-born. In this study, we examine the health profile of the largest immigrant groups in metropolitan France, considering several health indicators and with a special interest in the gendered patterns. Methods
: The data originate from the 2017 Health Barometer survey representative of metropolitan France. A subsample of 19,857 individuals aged 18–70 years was analysed using modified Poisson regression, and risk ratio estimates (RR) were provided for the different migrant groups regarding alcohol use, current smoking, obesity and less-than-good self-reported health, adjusting for age and educational level. Results
: None of the groups of male migrants differs from the native-born in terms of self-reported health, and they have healthier behaviours for alcohol (men from sub-Saharan Africa: 0.42 (0.29–0.61)) and from the Maghreb: 0.30 (0.1–0.54)) and smoking (men from sub-Saharan Africa: 0.64 (0.4–0.84)), with less frequent obesity (men from the Maghreb: 0.61 (0.3–0.95)). The latter, however, more frequently report current smoking (1.21 (1.0–1.46)). For women, less-than-good health is more frequently reported by the groups from sub-Saharan Africa (1.42 (1.1–1.75)) and from the Maghreb (1.55 (1.3–1.84)). Healthier behaviours were found for alcohol (women from overseas départements
: 0.38 (0.1–0.85)) and from the Maghreb: (0.18 (0.0–0.57)) and current smoking (women from southern Europe: 0.68 (0.4–0.97), from sub-Saharan Africa: 0.23 (0.1–0.38) and from the Maghreb: 0.42 (0.2–0.61)). Conversely, some were more frequently obese (women from overseas départements
: 1.79 (1.2–2.56) and from sub-Saharan Africa: 1.67 (1.2–2.23)). In the latter two groups from Africa, there is a larger relative male excess for tobacco than in the native-born (male-to-female ratios of respectively 2.87 (1.6–5.09) and 3.1 (2.0–4.65) vs 1.13 (1.0–1.20)) and there is a female excess for obesity (0.51 (0.2–0.89) and 0.41 (0.2–0.67)) in contrast with the native-born (1.07 (0.9–1.16)). The female disadvantage in terms of less-than-good self-reported health is more pronounced among migrants from the Maghreb than among the natives (0.56(0.4–0.46) vs. 0.86 (0.8–0.91)). Conclusion
: Considering a set of four health indicators, we provide evidence for distinctive gender patterns among immigrants in France. Male immigrants have a healthy behavioural profile in comparison with the natives and no health disadvantage. Female immigrants have a more mixed profile, with a health disadvantage for the non-Western groups from Africa. The contribution to this discordance of socioeconomic factors and gender relations needs to be investigated.
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