Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(12), 6701-6720; doi:10.3390/ijerph10126701
Article

A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Health Behaviors between Saudi and British Adolescents Living in Urban Areas: Gender by Country Analyses

1 Pediatric Exercise Physiology Research Laboratory, College of Education, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2458, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia 2 Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Coventry University, James Starley Building, Priory Street, Coventry, CV1 5FB, UK 3 School of Human Sciences, Newman University College, Birmingham, Genners Lane, Bartley Green, Birmingham B32 3NT, UK 4 College of Education, Qatar University, P.O. Box 2713, Qatar 5 Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 6941, Riyadh 11452, Saudi Arabia 6 School Health Services, Ministry of Education, Eastern Province 31952, Saudi Arabia 7 Nutrition and Health Studies Unit, University of Bahrain, P.O. Box 32038, Manama, Bahrain 8 Arab Center for Nutrition, P.O. Box 26923, Manama, Bahrain 9 Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland 10 School of Performing Arts and Leisure, University of Wolverhampton, Gorway Road, Walsall, WS1 3BD, UK
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 August 2013; in revised form: 15 November 2013 / Accepted: 19 November 2013 / Published: 3 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Behavior and Public Health)
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Abstract: This study investigated the cross-cultural differences and similarity in health behaviors between Saudi and British adolescents. A school-based cross-sectional study was conducted at four cities in Saudi Arabia (Riyadh and Al-Khobar; N = 1,648) and Britain (Birmingham and Coventry; N = 1,158). The participants (14–18 year-olds) were randomly selected using a multistage stratified cluster sampling technique. Measurements included anthropometric, screen time, validated physical activity (PA) questionnaire and dietary habits. The overweight/obesity prevalence among Saudi adolescents (38.3%) was significantly (p < 0.001) higher than that found among British adolescents (24.1%). The British adolescents demonstrated higher total PA energy expenditure than Saudi adolescents (means ± SE = 3,804.8 ± 81.5 vs. 2,219.9 ± 65.5 METs-min/week). Inactivity prevalence was significantly (p < 0.001) higher among Saudi adolescents (64%) compared with that of British adolescents (25.5%). The proportions of adolescents exceeding 2 h of daily screen time were high (88.0% and 90.8% among Saudis and British, respectively). The majority of Saudi and British adolescents did not have daily intakes of breakfast, fruit, vegetables and milk. MANCOVA showed significant (p < 0.05) gender by country interactions in several lifestyle factors. There was a significant (p < 0.001) gender differences in the ratio of physical activity to sedentary behaviors. In conclusion, Saudi and British adolescents demonstrated some similarities and differences in their PA levels, sedentary behaviors and dietary habits. Unhealthy lifestyle behaviors among adolescents appear to be a cross-cultural phenomenon.
Keywords: adolescents; British; culture; dietary habits; lifestyle factors; physical activity; Saudi; screen time; sedentary behaviors

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MDPI and ACS Style

Al-Hazzaa, H.M.; Al-Nakeeb, Y.; Duncan, M.J.; Al-Sobayel, H.I.; Abahussain, N.A.; Musaiger, A.O.; Lyons, M.; Collins, P.; Nevill, A. A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Health Behaviors between Saudi and British Adolescents Living in Urban Areas: Gender by Country Analyses. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 6701-6720.

AMA Style

Al-Hazzaa HM, Al-Nakeeb Y, Duncan MJ, Al-Sobayel HI, Abahussain NA, Musaiger AO, Lyons M, Collins P, Nevill A. A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Health Behaviors between Saudi and British Adolescents Living in Urban Areas: Gender by Country Analyses. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2013; 10(12):6701-6720.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Al-Hazzaa, Hazzaa M.; Al-Nakeeb, Yahya; Duncan, Michael J.; Al-Sobayel, Hana I.; Abahussain, Nada A.; Musaiger, Abdulrahman O.; Lyons, Mark; Collins, Peter; Nevill, Alan. 2013. "A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Health Behaviors between Saudi and British Adolescents Living in Urban Areas: Gender by Country Analyses." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 10, no. 12: 6701-6720.

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