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Sports 2017, 5(2), 23;

Lack of Reality: Positive Self-Perceptions of Health in the Presence of Disease

Human Exercise and Training Laboratory, Central Queensland University, Rockhampton, Queensland, 4702, Australia
Clinical Biochemistry Laboratory, Central Queensland University, Rockhampton, Queensland, 4702, Australia
Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, 84108, USA
Molecular and Applied Sciences Laboratory, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama, 36849, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Eling Douwe de Bruin
Received: 16 November 2016 / Revised: 28 March 2017 / Accepted: 1 April 2017 / Published: 6 April 2017
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [210 KB, uploaded 12 April 2017]


The aim of this study was to determine if adults in Central Queensland have accurate self-perceptions of health. Data were collected as part of the 2010 Central Queensland Social Survey (N = 1289). Overweight/obesity is considered a health disorder and was determined using body mass index. Disease states were determined by asking respondents if they have: heart disease, high/low blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, thyroid disorder, diabetes, and osteopenia/osteoporosis. Self-perceptions of health were assessed by asking, “Would you say that in general your health is” poor, fair, good, very good, excellent, don’t know, and no response. An accurate health perception occurred if: (1) A respondent with a disease/health disorder reported that their health was poor/fair or (2) A respondent without a disease/health disorder reported that their health was good/very good/excellent. The proportions of people with an accurate health perception by disease/health disorder were compared using a χ2 test. A proportion ratio (PR) with a 95% confidence interval (CI) was calculated for each disease/health disorder. A logistic regression analysis was performed to examine the association between each disease/health disorder and health perception using gender, age, education, physical activity level, and smoking status as covariates. More than 50% of residents with each disease/health disorder reported their health to be good/very good/excellent. Residents with each disease/health disorder were less likely to have an accurate health perception than those without the corresponding disease/health disorder prior to (p < 0.001) and following adjustment of the covariates (p < 0.001). Our results suggest that overweight/obesity and prevalence of disease are not being recognized as unhealthy, which contradicts established definitions of health. View Full-Text
Keywords: obesity; diabetes; cardiovascular disease obesity; diabetes; cardiovascular disease
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Dalbo, V.J.; Teramoto, M.; Roberts, M.D.; Scanlan, A.T. Lack of Reality: Positive Self-Perceptions of Health in the Presence of Disease. Sports 2017, 5, 23.

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