anthony d., baggott r., tanner j., jones k., evans h., perkins g. & palmer h. (2012) Health, lifestyle, belief and knowledge differences between two ethnic groups with specific reference to tobacco, diet and physical activity. Journal of Advanced Nursing68(11), 2496–2503.
Aims. To compare physical activity levels, body mass index, habitual diet, tobacco use and prevalence of non-communicable disease between the two ethnic groups and to identify predictors for differences between groups.
Background. Tobacco use, poor diet and physical inactivity are major lifestyle risk factors for chronic cardiovascular diseases, certain cancers, diabetes and chronic lung diseases. There are higher risk and incidence of these diseases in some ethnic groups, for example Asians have higher incidence of diabetes.
Design. Cross sectional survey.
Methods. Cross sectional survey of Asians of Indian descent and white British adults conducted between October–December 2009. Main outcome variables were lifestyle behaviours and BMI. Self-reported disease diagnosis was also collected. In a regression analysis, predictors of outcome variables were demographic variables and beliefs/attitudes/knowledge towards lifestyle behaviours.
Results/Findings. Body mass index, tobacco use and non-communicable disease (except diabetes) were lower in Indians. Indians reported lower physical activity levels and greater salt use than Whites. Tobacco use was higher in Whites, but knowledge, attitudes and beliefs were similar between Whites and Indians.
Conclusion. Health risk behaviour and morbidity are different between the two ethnic groups. Gender, age, educational level, beliefs, attitudes and knowledge do not explain these differences. Health promotion that aims to improve knowledge will probably not work and innovative methods are needed to improve health in high risk groups.