Differences in health behaviours between immigrant and non-immigrant groups: A protocol for a systematic review

Suresh Joshi*, Santosh Jatrana, Yin Paradies, Naomi Priest

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Health behaviours are important determinants of health and adoption of unhealthy behaviour is considered as one of the mechanisms through which immigrants' health changes over time in the host country. The change in health behaviours over time can contribute either to improving or worsening the overall health status of immigrants. Despite being the important mediators for the change in overall health status and chronic health conditions, no previous review (either general or systematic) has examined differences in key health behaviours simultaneously between immigrants and non-immigrants. This study aims to provide a systematic overview of the current global literature on differences in key health behaviours (that is, tobacco smoking, physical activity and alcohol drinking) between immigrant and non-immigrant groups.Methods/Design: Empirical studies in English language reporting quantitative data simultaneously on both immigrant and non-immigrant groups will be considered for this systematic review. Electronic scientific searches will be conducted on seven databases to identify relevant studies of interests: MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, EMBASE, Global Health, SocINDEX and ProQuest. In addition, Google/Google Scholar will be used to find the relevant studies and personal contact with experts will also be undertaken. Titles, abstracts and keywords of studies identified in the search strategies will be screened for inclusion criteria. The authors will select the studies following the PRISMA guidelines. The quality of included studies will be appraised using the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP) checklists. A descriptive summary statistics of included studies will describe the study designs, socio-demographic characteristics, and the exposure (immigrant and non-immigrant groups) and outcome (key health behaviours) measures. P-values and confidence intervals (CIs) for the associations between exposure and key health behaviours will also be reported.Discussion: This systematic review will facilitate a better understanding of differences in key health behaviours between immigrant and non-immigrant counterparts. It will provide a rigorous and reliable research base for future research and advance information on key health behaviours for a range of immigrant groups compared to non-immigrants in the high-migrant-receiving countries. Systematic review registration: This systematic review protocol has been registered with PROSPERO (registration number: CRD42014008688).

Original languageEnglish
Article number61
JournalSystematic Reviews
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jun 2014
Externally publishedYes


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