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Topical Collection "Health Behavior and Public Health"

Editors

Collection Editor
Prof. Dr. Tetsuji Yamada

Professor of Health Economics, chairperson, Rutgers University, #330 Armitage Hall, 311 North 5th Street, Camden, NJ 08102, USA
Website | E-Mail
Phone: 1-212-808-5375
Interests: health economics; economics of health behavior; public health and health promotion; economics of social welfare and public policy; health education
Collection Editor
Dr. Chia-Ching Chen

Department of Epidemiology and Community Health, School of Health Sciences & Practice, Room #223, New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY 10595, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: accessibility; disparities; psychosocial determinants associated with individual level outcomes

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

Health behavior change has become a central objective of public health and public health policy past years. During the past years, there has been a significant increase in public, private, and professional support in the public health field in preventing illness and maintaining good health by changing individuals’ lifestyle through behavioral changes. Another issues are accessibilities of healthcare services and an increase in health disparities. Along with this line, health literacy is another issue. Improvement of health and such support come from behavioral scientists, health educators, health promoters, health communicators, and governments. The influence of prevention within the health services has increased. It is important to underscore the application of behavioral and social science perspectives to research on contemporary health problems.

A decrease risk of morbidity and mortality basically depends on individual health behaviors, such as health literacy, behavioral decisions, equal access to healthcare. Understanding an influence on health behaviors and health risk factors is essential and associated with behavioral change which would be considered protective and health enhancing. Thus, Disease prevention, deterrence and early detection contribute to a healthy population, curbing a rapid increase in healthcare costs, and improving quality of life. In addition, issues on accessibility of health care and health disparities have become recent imperative concerns.

Assessment, interventions and evaluation of health and health behaviors are key elements to improve public health. Both public and private sectors provide preventive as well as treatment interventions. The augmented influence of prevention and maintenance of health and health policy would be coincided with increased multi-lateral levels with micro and macro aspects and cost-benefit/effectiveness analyses for allocation of resources is vital.

"Health Behavior and Public Health" explores research on health education, health communication, health behavioral changes, and public health policies, evaluates them with multilevel aspects, and exchanges knowledge in public health in interdisciplinary and international arenas.

Prof. Dr. Tetsuji Yamada
Dr. Chia-Ching Chen
Collection Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the collection website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (9 papers)

2017

Open AccessArticle Association between Sleep and Body Weight: A Panel Data Model Based on a Retrospective Longitudinal Cohort of Chinese Infants
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(5), 458; doi:10.3390/ijerph14050458
Received: 12 January 2017 / Revised: 25 March 2017 / Accepted: 21 April 2017 / Published: 25 April 2017
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Abstract
The focus of this article is on sleep duration and sleep problems in infants and their association with body weight. A retrospective birth cohort of 519 infants was enrolled in a community-based study conducted in Changsha, China. Infant weight and other health-related information
[...] Read more.
The focus of this article is on sleep duration and sleep problems in infants and their association with body weight. A retrospective birth cohort of 519 infants was enrolled in a community-based study conducted in Changsha, China. Infant weight and other health-related information were collected during regular standard checkups at the Community Health Service Centers when infants were 1, 3, 6, 8, and 12 months old. The sleep duration and sleep problems of infants were assessed by maternal self-reports. Panel data model was used to evaluate the association of sleep duration and sleep problems with infant body weight. Significant relevance between self-reported sleep duration and weight of infants has been reported in the literature tested by the fixed effects model (p < 0.01). However, this study indicated that sleep problems of infants had no effect on their weight (p = 0.151), after adjusting feeding patterns and socioeconomic factors of their families. This paper argues that, as a potentially modifiable risk factor, infant sleep duration deserves more attention from their parents and families in order to prevent and control overweight or obesity in infants as well as reducing the incidence of obesity in adults. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Environmental Tobacco Smoke Exposure and Smoke-Free Rules in Homes among Socially-Disadvantaged Populations in Poland
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 447; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040447
Received: 21 February 2017 / Revised: 5 April 2017 / Accepted: 19 April 2017 / Published: 21 April 2017
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Abstract
This study aims to examine the prevalence of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) in homes among socially-disadvantaged populations in Poland, along with the prevalence and correlates of voluntary implementation of smoke-free home rules. Data concerning 1617 respondents from a cross-sectional study completed
[...] Read more.
This study aims to examine the prevalence of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) in homes among socially-disadvantaged populations in Poland, along with the prevalence and correlates of voluntary implementation of smoke-free home rules. Data concerning 1617 respondents from a cross-sectional study completed in the Piotrkowski District were used, which was part of the “Reducing Social Inequalities in Health” program. Overall, 19.4% of the respondents declared exposure to ETS at home. In the non-smokers group, 15.5%, including 6.6% males and 18.3% females, were exposed to ETS in their place of residence (p < 0.0001). Complete smoke-free rules were adopted by 22.1% of the study participants. Two factors, smoker status and lack of ETS-associated health risk awareness, were found to be significantly associated with no adoption of total smoking bans at home. Socially-disadvantaged non-smokers, especially females from rural areas in Poland, still constitute a large population exposed to ETS in their homes—a challenge from the perspective of public health. Focused efforts are required to address social norms around exposing others to ETS. Full article
Open AccessArticle Who Is Using Outdoor Fitness Equipment and How? The Case of Xihu Park
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 448; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040448
Received: 15 February 2017 / Revised: 31 March 2017 / Accepted: 18 April 2017 / Published: 21 April 2017
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Abstract
Outdoor fitness equipment (OFE) placed in public parks has the potential to encourage physical activity. However, little is known about OFE users and use patterns. This study employed onsite and video observations of OFE usage to describe user characteristics and patterns in Xihu
[...] Read more.
Outdoor fitness equipment (OFE) placed in public parks has the potential to encourage physical activity. However, little is known about OFE users and use patterns. This study employed onsite and video observations of OFE usage to describe user characteristics and patterns in Xihu Park. Results indicate that OFE in this park attracted considerable use, particularly in the early morning and late afternoon. During these peak-hour observations, approximately 12 users per hour used the OFE, with the majority being females and seniors. The triple arm stretch and air walker were the most popular stations. However, most OFE users interacted with less than three of the available six OFE stations. Furthermore, users spent an average of less than nine minutes on all OFE stations combined. While OFE equipment was well-used in this urban park, it appears users did not interact with OFE at rates to produce a sufficient bout or level of physical activity during their park visit. Further investigations of OFE are encouraged to determine their health impact. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A National Study of Social Media, Television, Radio, and Internet Usage of Adults by Sexual Orientation and Smoking Status: Implications for Campaign Design
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 450; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040450
Received: 16 December 2016 / Revised: 5 April 2017 / Accepted: 18 April 2017 / Published: 21 April 2017
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Abstract
Background: Smoking rates among lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) people significantly exceed that of heterosexuals. Media interventions are an important part of tobacco control efforts, but limited information is available on LGB people’s media use. Methods: A nationally representative sample of
[...] Read more.
Background: Smoking rates among lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) people significantly exceed that of heterosexuals. Media interventions are an important part of tobacco control efforts, but limited information is available on LGB people’s media use. Methods: A nationally representative sample of 12,900 U.S. adults completed an online questionnaire assessing media use, smoking status, and demographic information. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess relationships between media use with sexual orientation and smoking status. Results: A total of 590 (4.6%) respondents identified as LGB, of which 29% were smokers. Regardless of sexual orientation and smoking status, the Internet was the most popular media channel used, followed by television and radio. LGB respondents had significantly greater odds of having accounts on social media websites, accessing Facebook daily, and being a frequent Internet user, compared to heterosexual respondents. Similar media use was found between smokers and non-smokers, but smokers had greater odds of being frequent television viewers and frequent Internet users, compared to non-smokers. Conclusions: Compared to heterosexuals, LGB respondents reported greater use of the Internet, especially social media. Media campaigns targeting LGB populations can maximize reach by utilizing social media alongside traditional media channels. Full article
Open AccessArticle Smoke-Free Laws and Hazardous Drinking: A Cross-Sectional Study among U.S. Adults
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 412; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040412
Received: 18 January 2017 / Revised: 21 March 2017 / Accepted: 11 April 2017 / Published: 13 April 2017
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Abstract
Tobacco and alcohol use are strongly associated. This cross-sectional study examined the relationship of smoke-free law coverage and smoke-free bar law coverage with hazardous drinking behaviors among a representative sample of U.S. adult drinkers (n = 17,057). We merged 2009 National Health
[...] Read more.
Tobacco and alcohol use are strongly associated. This cross-sectional study examined the relationship of smoke-free law coverage and smoke-free bar law coverage with hazardous drinking behaviors among a representative sample of U.S. adult drinkers (n = 17,057). We merged 2009 National Health Interview Survey data, American Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation U.S. Tobacco Control Laws Database, and Census Population Estimates. Hazardous drinking outcomes included heavy drinking (>14 drinks/week for men; >7 drinks/week for women) and binge drinking (≥5 drinks on one or more days during past year). Chi-square tests compared hazardous drinking by sociodemographic factors. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to examine if smoke-free law and bar law coverages were associated with hazardous drinking, controlling for sociodemographics and smoking status. Subset analyses were conducted among drinkers who also smoked (n = 4074) to assess the association between law coverages and hazardous drinking. Among all drinkers, smoke-free law coverage was not associated with heavy drinking (adjusted odds ratio (AOR) = 1.22, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.99–1.50) or binge drinking (AOR = 1.09, 95% CI = 0.93–1.26). Smoke-free bar law coverage was also found to be unrelated to hazardous drinking. Similar results were found among those drinkers who smoked. Findings suggest that smoke-free laws and bar laws are not associated with elevated risk for alcohol-related health issues. Full article
Open AccessArticle Television Viewing and Its Association with Sedentary Behaviors, Self-Rated Health and Academic Performance among Secondary School Students in Peru
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 383; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040383
Received: 3 February 2017 / Revised: 21 March 2017 / Accepted: 1 April 2017 / Published: 5 April 2017
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Abstract
The study assessed television viewing >2 h a day and its association with sedentary behaviors, self-rated health, and academic performance among secondary school adolescents. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among randomly selected students in Lima in 2015. We measured self-reported responses of students
[...] Read more.
The study assessed television viewing >2 h a day and its association with sedentary behaviors, self-rated health, and academic performance among secondary school adolescents. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among randomly selected students in Lima in 2015. We measured self-reported responses of students using a standard questionnaire, and conducted in-depth interviews with 10 parents and 10 teachers. Chi-square test, correlation and multivariate logistic regression analysis were performed among 1234 students, and thematic analysis technique was used for qualitative information. A total of 23.1% adolescents reported watching television >2 h a day. Qualitative findings also show that adolescents spend most of their leisure time watching television, playing video games or using the Internet. Television viewing had a significant positive correlation with video game use in males and older adolescents, with Internet use in both sexes, and a negative correlation with self-rated health and academic performance in females. Multivariate logistic regression analysis shows that television viewing >2 h a day, independent of physical activity was associated with video games use >2 h a day, Internet use >2 h a day, poor/fair self-rated health and poor self-reported academic performance. Television viewing time and sex had a significant interaction effect on both video game use >2 h a day and Internet use >2 h a day. Reducing television viewing time may be an effective strategy for improving health and academic performance in adolescents. Full article
Open AccessArticle Evaluation of the “Eat Better Feel Better” Cooking Programme to Tackle Barriers to Healthy Eating
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 380; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040380
Received: 23 November 2016 / Revised: 22 March 2017 / Accepted: 1 April 2017 / Published: 4 April 2017
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Abstract
We evaluated a 6-week community-based cooking programme, “Eat Better Feel Better”, aimed at tackling barriers to cooking and healthy eating using a single-group repeated measures design. 117 participants enrolled, 62 completed baseline and post-intervention questionnaires, and 17 completed these and a 3–4 months
[...] Read more.
We evaluated a 6-week community-based cooking programme, “Eat Better Feel Better”, aimed at tackling barriers to cooking and healthy eating using a single-group repeated measures design. 117 participants enrolled, 62 completed baseline and post-intervention questionnaires, and 17 completed these and a 3–4 months follow-up questionnaire. Most participants were female, >45 years, and socioeconomically deprived. Confidence constructs changed positively from baseline to post-intervention (medians, scale 1 “not confident” to 7 “very confident”): “cooking using raw ingredients” (4, 6 p < 0.003), “following simple recipe” (5, 6 p = 0.003), “planning meals before shopping” (4, 5 p = <0.001), “shopping on a budget (4, 5 p = 0.044), “shopping healthier food” (4, 5 p = 0.007), “cooking new foods” (3, 5 p < 0.001), “cooking healthier foods” (4, 5 p = 0.001), “storing foods safely” (5, 6 p = 0.002); “using leftovers” (4, 5 p = 0.002), “cooking raw chicken” (5, 6 p = 0.021), and “reading food labels” (4, 5 p < 0.001). “Microwaving ready-meals” decreased 46% to 39% (p = 0.132). “Preparing meals from scratch” increased 48% to 59% (p = 0.071). Knowledge about correct portion sizes increased 47% to 74% (p = 0.002). Spending on ready-meals/week decreased. Follow-up telephone interviewees (n = 42) reported developing healthier eating patterns, spending less money/wasting less food, and preparing more meals/snacks from raw ingredients. The programme had positive effects on participants’ cooking skills confidence, helped manage time, and reduced barriers of cost, waste, and knowledge.) Full article
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Open AccessArticle Why Do People Exercise in Natural Environments? Norwegian Adults’ Motives for Nature-, Gym-, and Sports-Based Exercise
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(4), 377; doi:10.3390/ijerph14040377
Received: 27 January 2017 / Revised: 13 March 2017 / Accepted: 1 April 2017 / Published: 4 April 2017
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Abstract
Exercise in natural environments (“green exercise”) confers numerous health benefits, but little is known about why people engage in green exercise. This study examined the importance of nature experiences as a motive for physical activity and the motivational profile of people who engage
[...] Read more.
Exercise in natural environments (“green exercise”) confers numerous health benefits, but little is known about why people engage in green exercise. This study examined the importance of nature experiences as a motive for physical activity and the motivational profile of people who engage in green exercise compared to gym- and sports-based exercise. Physical activity motives and typical times spent in different domains of physical activity were reported by 2168 Norwegian adults in a survey. Experiencing nature was generally rated as the second-most important physical activity motive, exceeded only by convenience motives, and it was especially important for older adults and those who engage in greater amounts of instrumental physical activity. Green exercisers reported stronger motives concerning convenience and experiencing nature, whereas gym- or sports-based exercisers reported stronger motives for physical health and sociability. The motives associated with different leisure-time exercise domains may assist in understanding optimal promotion of green exercise. Full article
Open AccessArticle Influencing Factors of the Body Mass Index of Elementary Students in Southern Taiwan
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(3), 220; doi:10.3390/ijerph14030220
Received: 23 December 2016 / Revised: 29 January 2017 / Accepted: 29 January 2017 / Published: 23 February 2017
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Abstract
The body mass index (BMI) of school children in Taiwan is markedly increasing. According to statistical data from the Taiwan Ministry of Education, the prevalence of obesity in school children from the southern part of the country is the highest in Taiwan. Thus,
[...] Read more.
The body mass index (BMI) of school children in Taiwan is markedly increasing. According to statistical data from the Taiwan Ministry of Education, the prevalence of obesity in school children from the southern part of the country is the highest in Taiwan. Thus, exploring the factors influencing BMI in elementary school children from southern Taiwan is crucial. This study investigated the influencing factors including physical activity levels, sedentary behaviors, dietary habits, and perceived body shape on the BMIs of elementary school children from southern Taiwan. A cross-sectional design was used, and the participants consisted of 3251 fifth-grade students (1628 boys, 50.1%; 1623 girls, 49.9%). The average BMI values for boys and girls were 19.69 and 18.70 (kg/cm) respectively. Statistically significant associations were observed between BMI and sex, 31–60 min of daily vigorous or moderate physical activities levels, length of time spent watching television, time spent on video games or the computer, and intake of vegetable or meat gravy with rice (p < 0.001). Perceived body shape also affected the BMI of school children. The results of this study enable educational institutions in Taiwan to understand the factors affecting the BMI of school children and use this information as the basis for future healthy body weight policies. Full article

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