Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Some Asian Families Show Unnatural Birthrate

The normal birthrate is 1.05:1 in favor of boys. But among Asian-American communities (Chinese, Korean, Indian, etc.) the odds of having a son in some families can be as much as 1.5:1, reports the AP.

Researchers suspect cultural differences, which favor males, are following Asian families to the United States. For example, India's dowry system and China's one-child policy.

At the moment, it's hard to tell how Asian-American families are manipulating birth rates. One theory, suggested by researchers, is that ultrasounds (to determine the fetus' sex) are followed by "disproportionate abortion of females." Since the unnatural birthrate developed (between 1990 and 2000), use of ultrasound among non-Japanese Asian mothers climbed from 38 to 64 percent.

Among first-born Asian-Americans, the birth rate is normal. But if the first child is a girl, birth rates shift to 1.17:1 in favor of boys. If the first two are girls, the rate reaches 1.5:1 l

The findings, based US census data, are being reported by a team of researchers from Columbia University and the National Bureau of Economic Research (
see AP article on the research here).

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.