Neighborhood Profiles and Body Mass Index Trajectory in Female Adolescents and Young Adults

Li Niu, Lindsay T. Hoyt, Sarah Pickering, Anne Nucci-Sack, Anthony Salandy, Viswanathan Shankar, Elisa M. Rodriguez, Robert D. Burk, Nicolas F. Schlecht, Angela Diaz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to identify distinct neighborhood profiles patterned by key structural, physical, and social characteristics and test whether living in different profiles are associated with body mass index trajectories during adolescence in racial/ethnic minority female youth. Methods: Participants were 1,328 sexually active female adolescents and young adults aged 14–23 years, predominately Hispanic and black, enrolled in an human papillomavirus type 4 vaccine (Gardasil) surveillance study at a large adolescent health clinic in New York City between 2007 and 2018. Body mass index was calculated from weight and height every 6 months. A comprehensive set of neighborhood structural, social, and physical characteristics from multiple national and state datasets was linked to each participant based on home address. Results: Latent profile analysis revealed five distinct neighborhood profiles in New York City: High Structural/High Social Advantage, Moderate Advantage/Low Crime, Low SES (Socioeconomic Status)/High Activity, Low SES/High Social Advantage, and High Disadvantage. Results from multilevel growth curve analysis revealed that living in Low SES/High Activity neighborhoods was associated with a lower BMI at age 22 (b = −1.32, 95% confidence interval −2.49, −.16), as well as a slower increase in BMI from age 14 to 22 years (b = −.22, 95% confidence interval −.46, .02), compared to the High Disadvantage profile. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that improving neighborhood structural, social, and physical environments may help promote healthy weight and reduce health disparities during adolescence and young adulthood.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1024-1031
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Adolescence and young adulthood
  • Body mass index
  • Neighborhood effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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