One health behaviour or many health-related behaviors?



Year of publication 2018
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Psychology Research and Behavior Management
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Keywords health behavior; model; latent variable analysis
Description Objective: Of the many existing health models, models of health behavior are considered optimal for research and application as they focus on concrete forms of behavior that support, maintain, or undermine one’s health, and they accentuate the individual as the initiator of this behavior. Research in this area follows a broad range of concrete partial manifestations of health behavior. Is it necessary to differentiate between various types of health behavior or could these partial manifestations be combined under one common scale? Methods: Data acquisition tool: Health-Related Behavior Scale (HRBS, 42 items). Data processing methods: principal component analysis (the internal structure of HRBS), confirmatory factor analysis (the latent factor structure of four tested models). Sample: N=1,664 adult respondents. Results: The HRBS described ten areas of health-related behavior (ten extracted factors). All tested models of latent structure showed almost identical mathematical and statistical values of the model. Conclusion: Health-related behavior includes a set of partial behaviors (behavior related to nutrition, addictive substances, movement, and physical exercises). An unambiguous latent factor structure has not been revealed. An open question remains whether there is one latent factor behind all health-related behaviors or whether there are multiple latent factors. The use of one or the other model should be deduced from the underlying theory and research objectives. To find a reliable model of health behavior, it is necessary to include moderators and mediators such as personality, attitude, or economic status.
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