Perceived morbidity as a determinant of health behavior

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Bibliographic Details
Title translated into German:Wahrgenommene Morbiditaet als Determinante des Gesundheitsverhaltens
Author:Fuchs, Reinhard; Heath, Gregory W.; Wheeler, Frances C.
Published in:Health Education Research
Published:7 (1992), 3 , S. 327-334, Lit.
Format: Publications (Database SPOLIT)
Publication Type: Journal article
Media type: Print resource
ISSN:0268-1153, 1465-3648
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Identification number:PU199411073988

Author's abstract

It is hypothesized that perceibed morbidity, a concept closely related to perceived vulnerability, is an important determinant of health behaviors. In this cross-sectional study (N = 2740), perceived morbidity was conceptualized as a categorical variable defining six distinct morbidity groups: the hypertension, high cholesterol, angina pectoris, heart attack, stroke and 'morbidity-free' groups. We used analyses of covariance to identify differences in health behaviors between the six groups; the analyses were done separately for middle-aged (40-60 years old) and older (>60 years old) respondents. Results show that perceived morbidity had a significant effect on fat consumption (P<0.001) and on physical activity (P<0.01). In both age ranges, the morbidity-free group had the highest fat consumption; among the middle-aged respondents, the level of physical activity was significantly lower in the morbidity-free group than in the heart attack group. Furthermore, respondents in the high cholesterol group showed consistently a 'better' health behavior than people in the hypertension group. Overall, these results suggest that the concept of perceibed morbidity may be useful in explaining inter-individual differences in health behaviors. Verf.-Referat