Healthy lifestyle choices: could sense of coherence aid health promotion?

TitleHealthy lifestyle choices: could sense of coherence aid health promotion?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsWainwright, NWJ, Surtees, PG, Welch, AA, Luben, RN, Khaw, K-T, Bingham, SA
JournalJ Epidemiol Community Health
Volume61
Issue10
Pagination871-6
Date Published2007 Oct
ISSN0143-005X
KeywordsAdaptation, Psychological, Adult, Aged, Choice Behavior, Cross-Sectional Studies, Diet, Educational Status, Feeding Behavior, Female, Health Behavior, Health Promotion, Humans, Internal-External Control, Life Style, Male, Middle Aged, Motor Activity, Smoking, Social Class
Abstract

BACKGROUND: A research framework based on the personal characteristic defined by a sense of coherence (SOC) focuses on the effective use of resources to maintain good health.OBJECTIVES: To test the hypothesis that individual differences in SOC are associated with healthier lifestyle choices independently of social class and education.DESIGN AND SETTING: Cross sectional. Population based cohort study recruited through 35 general practice registers. Reported dietary intakes of alcohol, fruit and vegetables, fibre, saturated fat, non-discretionary salt (sodium), and total sugars were assessed by food frequency questionnaire. Current cigarette smoking, physical inactivity, and SOC were assessed through questionnaires.PARTICIPANTS: 7,863 men and 10,424 women. Residents of Norfolk (UK).RESULTS: Compared with participants with the weakest SOC, those with the strongest were 28% less likely to be current smokers (odds ratio 0.72 (95% confidence interval (CI), 0.58 to 0.89)), 36% less likely to be physically inactive (0.64 (0.55 to 0.75)), and reportedly consumed on average 63 g/day more fruit and vegetables (95% CI, 46 to 80), and 1.2 g/day more fibre (0.8 to 1.6). These associations were independent of age, sex, social class, and education. For physical inactivity and consumption of fruit, vegetables, and fibre, these differences exceeded those observed between the extremes of social class and education.CONCLUSIONS: Individual differences in SOC are associated with healthy lifestyle choices independently of social class and education, and may therefore aid the design of future health promotion interventions.

DOI10.1136/jech.2006.056275
Alternate JournalJ Epidemiol Community Health
Citation Key10.1136/jech.2006.056275
PubMed ID17873222
PubMed Central IDPMC2652963
Grant ListG0300128 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
G0401527 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
MC_U105630924 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
/ / Wellcome Trust / United Kingdom