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date: 20 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter reviews evidence of stigma and differences in physical health between members of dominant social groups and select disadvantaged social groups (defined by race, sexual orientation, and weight) and considers the direct and indirect ways that stigma can contribute to these differences in health. The goal of this chapter is to provide a deeper understanding of the relationship between stigma and health disparities for members of these groups. It considers how enacted, anticipated, and internalized stigmas influence, to varying degrees, health and health disparities experienced by Blacks, sexual minorities, and people with overweight or obesity. The chapter concludes by suggesting promising future directions for research. The new insights provided by this theoretical understanding can lead to interventions that reduce stigma as well as help members of these (and other) stigmatized groups better cope with the stigma they confront in their lives and thus realize better psychological and physical health.

Keywords: anticipated stigma, discrimination, enacted stigma, health, health disparities, internalized stigma, obesity, overweight, race, sexual minorities

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