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This study addresses immigrant health from the point of view of social health inequalities research. We study differences in overweight between immigrants and natives in two countries, France and Spain. Controlling for socioeconomic characteristics, we focus on effects that pertain to the country of origin and to the country of arrival in explaining overweight prevalence. We first estimate and compare between France and Spain, in women and men, the effect of immigration status on overweight when controlled for age, socioeconomic status (SES), and country of origin. We study the role of length of stay as proxied by naturalisation status and according to country of origin. We investigate the role of GDP, HDI and obesity prevalence in the country of origin. We then estimate how differences in population compositions and differences in estimated coefficients contribute to observed differences in overweight between natives and migrants for each country.



Working paper


International Migration Institute

Publication Date




Total pages



Migration, obesity, health inequality, France, Spain