||The heavy metal cadmium (Cd) is long-lived in the body and low-level cumulative exposure, even among non-smokers, has been associated with changes in renal function and bone metabolism. Women are more susceptible to the adverse effects of Cd and have higher body burdens. Due to increased dietary absorption of Cd in menstruating women and the long half-life of the metal, reproductive age exposures are likely important contributors to overall body burden and disease risk. We examined blood Cd levels in women of reproductive age in the US and assessed variation by race/ethnicity. Blood Cd concentrations were compared among female NHANES participants aged 20-44, who were neither pregnant nor breastfeeding. Sample size varied primarily based on inclusion/exclusion of smokers (n=1734-3121). Mean Cd concentrations, distributions and odds ratios were calculated using SUDAAN. For logistic regression Cd was modeled as high (the upper 10% of the distribution) vs. the remainder. Overall, Mexican Americans had lower Cd levels than other groups due to a lower smoking prevalence, smoking being an important source of exposure. Among never-smokers, Mexican Americans had 1.77 (95% CI: 1.06-2.96) times the odds of high Cd as compared to non-Hispanic Whites after controlling for age and low iron (ferritin). For non-Hispanic Blacks, the odds were 2.96 (CI: 1.96-4.47) times those of non-Hispanic Whites in adjusted models. Adjustment for relevant reproductive factors or exposure to environmental tobacco smoke had no effect. In this nationally representative sample, non-smoking Mexican American and non-Hispanic Black women were more likely to have high Cd than non-Hispanic White women. Additional research is required to determine the underlying causes of these differences.