Perceived morbidity as a determinant of health behavior

Reinhard Fuchs, Gregory Heath, Frances C. Wheeler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

It is hypothesized that perceived 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 signficantly 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 perceived morbidity may be useful in explaining inter-individual differences in health behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)327-334
Number of pages8
JournalHealth Education Research
Volume7
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 1992

Fingerprint

Health Behavior
health behavior
morbidity
determinants
Morbidity
Group
heart attack
hypertension
Fats
Myocardial Infarction
Cholesterol
Hypertension
Angina Pectoris
stroke
cross-sectional study
Individuality
vulnerability
Cross-Sectional Studies
Stroke

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

Perceived morbidity as a determinant of health behavior. / Fuchs, Reinhard; Heath, Gregory; Wheeler, Frances C.

In: Health Education Research, Vol. 7, No. 3, 01.09.1992, p. 327-334.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Fuchs, Reinhard ; Heath, Gregory ; Wheeler, Frances C. / Perceived morbidity as a determinant of health behavior. In: Health Education Research. 1992 ; Vol. 7, No. 3. pp. 327-334.
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