Behavior Change Theory in Health Education and Promotion

Susan J. Curry and Robin J. Mermelstein

in Public Health

ISBN: 9780199756797
Published online April 2013 | | DOI:
Behavior Change Theory in Health Education and Promotion

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The 20th century witnessed an extraordinary shift from infectious to chronic diseases as the leading causes of death. With greater understanding of the etiology of chronic disease, health behaviors have emerged as major contributors to premature morbidity and mortality. Thus, modifying health behaviors has tremendous potential to reduce the human and economic burdens of disease through prevention. Numerous studies have demonstrated that health behavior change including tobacco cessation, dietary modification with modest weight loss, and increased physical activity both prevents disease onset and improves the treatment and management of common diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancers, and diabetes. Behavior change is complex and is most successful when resources align at the individual, interpersonal, and community levels. Health behavior change theory provides a roadmap to the major factors that influence behavior, articulates the relationships among the various factors, and considers when, where, and how these factors operate. This roadmap is critical for the development and implementation of effective approaches to health behavior change. Health behavior change theory and practice have evolved over time to focus on integrative models that examine the interplay of individual, interpersonal, social, cultural, and environmental factors. The following bibliography offers a collection of resources related to understanding, developing, testing, and applying health behavior theory at these multiple levels. It includes both early classic citations and recent theory formulations and applications. Many of the sources cited can be considered “metaresources,” as their coverage and references will lead the reader to more in-depth pursuit of specific topics.

Article.  10354 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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