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Overweight, obesity, and strong attitudes Predicting participation in physical activity in a predominantly Hispanic college population

Overweight, obesity, and strong attitudes Predicting participation in physical activity in a predominantly Hispanic college population

Health Education Journal 71(1): 5-16

Obesity is the leading cause of preventable death and conveys risk for diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke. Overweight and obesity are common among college students with surveys showing 35 per cent of college students to be overweight (National College Health Risk Behavioral Survey (NCHRBS), 1995). Unhealthy diets and low physical activity are the major causes. To examine rates of obesity, participation in exercise, and predictors of exercise among a predominantly Hispanic (72 per cent) college student sample. Three hundred and ninety two students completed questionnaires as part of a general health screening. General participation in exercise is high (61 per cent), but the majority (69 per cent) do not meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations for physical activity (PA). Also, exercise importance and gender were strong predictors of participation in physical activity and exercise in this sample. Strong attitudes are an important determinant of participation in PA in this sample. Future studies might explore these relationships among other ethnic/demographic groups, as well as test the effectiveness of attitude change interventions for increasing PA.

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Accession: 036319326

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DOI: 10.1177/0017896910379362

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