Health Behavior Interventions with Families

  • Tom Baranowski
  • Marsha Davis Hearn


Families are an important social environment within which health-related behaviors occur (Tinsley, 1992). This is particularly true for food-related behaviors. Foods are often purchased, prepared, and consumed in the presence of family members. A fast food restaurant is often selected by family decision, and foods are often selected in the presence of other family members. Some parents use foods as rewards for children’s good behaviors. Some couples use a favorite restaurant as a setting for anniversaries and other special occasions. Some characteristics of the family serve to maintain the existing behavior (Neill, Marshall, & Yale, 1978), while other characteristics can be latent forces for change. If health professionals attempt to change an individual’s behavior without being informed about the various family influences, the attempt will likely run into many impediments, and thereby fail.


Health Behavior Family Functioning Dietary Change Dietary Behavior Nutrition Education 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tom Baranowski
    • 1
  • Marsha Davis Hearn
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Behavioral Science, M. D. Anderson Cancer CenterUniversity of Texas at HoustonHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Nutrition and DieteticsGeorgia State UniversityAtlantaUSA

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