Health Behavior

  • Michael Feuerstein
  • Elise E. Labbé
  • Andrzej R. Kuczmierczyk


The rising interest in health behavior today reflects a recent focus on the prevention of illness. Seven of the ten leading causes of death in the United States apppear to be associated with the absence of various health behaviors. Table 8–1 identifies the 10 leading causes of death in 1977 and related risk factors. Most of these causal agents are behavioral in nature or involve some behavioral response on the part of the individual. Matarazzo (1983) points out that whereas contagious and infectious diseases contribute minimally to illness and death, other illnesses have become more frequent and are of a different nature. As discussed in Chapter 2, biomedical research suggests that major breakthroughs in science have contributed significantly toward reducing the prevalence of infectious diseases. Such diseases as influenza, rubella, whooping cough, and polio are no longer a major concern of health care professionals. More deaths are now caused by heart disease (37.8% of all deaths), cancer (20%), and stroke (9.6%). Recent epidemiological studies suggest that these illnesses are the by-products of changes in twentieth-century industrial practices and personal life-styles. Health care professionals are beginning to recognize and are providing empirical evidence demonstrating that the major causes of death are ones in which behavioral pathogens are the single most important factor.


Health Behavior Behavioral Medicine Health Belief Model Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory Illness Behavior 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. American Diabetes Association. (1979). Principles of nutrition and dietary recommendations for individuals with diabetes mellitus. Diabetes Care, 2, 520–523.Google Scholar
  2. Antonovsky, A. (1979). Health, stress, and coping. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  3. Avogaro, P. (1984). Apolipoproteins, the lipid hypothesis and ischemic heart disease. In R. M. Kaplan & M. H. Criqui (Eds.), Behavioral epidemiology and disease prevention (pp. 49–59). New York: Plenum Press.Google Scholar
  4. Baile, W. F., & Engel, B. T. (1978). A behavioral strategy for promoting treatment compliance following myocardial infarction. Psychosomatic Medicine, 40(5), 413–419.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Becker, M. H., & Maiman, L. A. (1975). Sociobehavioral determinants of compliance with health and medical care recommendations. Medical Care, 13(1), 10–24.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Becker, M. H., Drechman, R. H., & Krischt, J. P. (1972). Predicting mothers compliance with pediatric medical regimens. Journal of Pediatrics, 81, 843–854.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Becker, M. H., Haefner, D. P., Kasl, S. V., Kirscht, J. P., Maiman, L. A., & Rosenstock, I. M. (1977). Selected psychosocial models and correlates of individual health-related behaviors. Medical Care, 15 (Suppl. 5), 27–46.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Belloc, N. B., & Breslow, L. (1972). Relationships of physical health status and health practices. Preventive Medicine, 1, 409–421.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Berg, R. L. (1976). The high cost of self-deception. Preventive Medicine, 5, 483–495.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Blumenthal, J. A., Sanders, W., Wallace, A. G., Williams, R. B., & Needles, T. L. (1982). Physiological and psychological variables predict compliance to prescribed exercise therapy in patients recovering from myocardial infarction. Psychosomatic Medicine, 44, 519–527.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Califano, J. A., Jr. (1979). Healthy people: The Surgeon General’s report on health promotion and disease presentation. Washington, DC: Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Stock Number 017–001–00416–2.Google Scholar
  12. Carney, R. M., Schechter, K., & Davis, T. (1983). Improving adherence to blood glucose testing in insulin-dependent diabetic children. Behavior Therapy, 14, 247–254.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Carver, C. S., & Scheier, M. F. (1982). Control theory: A useful conceptual framework for personality—social, clinical, and health psychology. Pschological Bulletin, 92, 111–135.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Davidson, P. D. (1982). Issues in patients compliance. In T. Millon, C. Green, & R. Meagher (Eds.), Handbook of clinical health physiology. New York: Plenum Press.Google Scholar
  15. Davis, M. S. (1968). Physiologic, psychosocial, and demographic factors in patient compliance with doctors’ order. Medical Care, 6, 115–122CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Elling, R., Whittemore, R., & Green, M. (1960). Patient participation in a pediatric program. Journal of Health and Human Behavior, 1, 183.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Epstein, L. H., Beck, S., Figueroa, J., Farkas, G., Kazdin, A. E., Daneman, D., & Becker, D. (1981a). The effects of targeting improvements in urine glucose on metabolic control. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 14, 365–375.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Epstein, L. H., Figueroa, J., Farkas, G. M., & Beck, S. (1981b). The short-term effects of feedback on accuracy of urine glucose determinants in insulin-dependent diabetic children. Behavior Therapy, 12, 560–564.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Folkman, S., & Lazarus, R. (1980). An analysis of coping in a middle-aged community sample. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 21, 219–239.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Gardner, D. F., Mehl, T., Eastman, B., & Merimee, T. J. (1983). Psychosocial factors: Importance for success in a program of SGM. Diabetes, 32,(11) (Abstract).Google Scholar
  21. Harris, D. M., & Guten, S. (1979). Health protective behavior: An exploratory study. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 20(1), 17–29.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hartman, P. E., & Becker, M. H. (1978). Non-compliance with prescribed regimen among chronic hemodialysis patients: A method of prediction and educational diagnosis. Dialysis and Transplantation, 7, 978–985.Google Scholar
  23. Haynes, D. L., & Sackett, R. B. (Eds.). (1976). Compliance with therapeutic regimens. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  24. Hubert, H. B., Feinleib, B. M., McNamara, P. M., & Castelli, W. P. (1983). Obesity as an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease: A 26-year follow-up of participants in the Framingham Heart Study. Circulation, 67(5), 968–977.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hunt, W. A., Matarazzo, J. D., Weiss, S. M., & Gentry, W. D. (1979). Associative learning, habit, and health behavior. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 2, 111–123.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Janis, I. L. (1984). The patient as decision maker. In W. D. Gentry (Ed.), Handbook of behavioral medicine. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  27. Janis, I. L., & Mann, L. (1977). Decision making: A psychological analysis of conflict, choice, and commitment. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  28. Jenkins, C. D. (1979). An approach to the diagnosis and treatment of problems of health related behavior. International Journal of Health Education, 22 (Suppl. 2), 1–24.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. Kaplan, R. M. (1984). The connection between clinical health promotion and health status. A critical overview. American Psychologist, 39(7), 755–765.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Kaplan, R. M., & Bush, J. W. (1982). Health related quality of life measurement for evaluation research and policy analysis. Health Psychology, 1, 61–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kasl, S. V. (1975). Issues in patient adherence to health care regimens. Stress, 1, 5–17.Google Scholar
  32. Kasl, S. V., & Cobb, S. (1966a). Health behavior and illness behavior: I. Health and illness behavior. Archives of Environmental Health, 12, 246–266.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kasl, S. V., & Cobb, S. (1966b). Health behavior; illness behavior, and sick role behavior: II. Sick role behavior. Archives of Environmental Health, 12, 531–541.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kegeles, S. S. (1969). A field experimental attempt to change beliefs and behavior of women in an urban ghetto. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 10, 115–124.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kimble, G. A., & Perlmutter, L. C. (1970). The problem of volition. Psychological Review, 77, 361–384.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Leventhal, H., & Cleary, P. D. (1980). The smoking problem: A review of the research and theory in behavioral risk-reduction. Psychological Bulletin, 88, 370–405.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Leventhal, H., & Nerenz, D. (1983). A model for stress research and some implications for the control of stress disorder. In P. Meichenbaum & M. Jaremko (Eds.), Stress prevention and management: A cognitive behavioral approach. New York: Plenum Press.Google Scholar
  38. Leventhal, H., Meyer, D., & Nerenz, D. (1980). The common-sense representation of illness-danger. In S. Rachman (Ed.), Medical Psychology (Vol. 2). New York: Per-gamon Press.Google Scholar
  39. Levine, D. M., Green, L. W., Deeds, S. G., Chwalow, J., Russell, R. P., & Finlay, J. (1979). Health education for hypertensive patients. Journal of the American Medical Association, 242(16), 1700–1703.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Levy, R. L. (1980). The role of social support in patient compliance: A review. In R. B. Haynes, M. E. Mattson, & T. O. Engebretson (Eds.), Patient compliance to prescribed antihypertensive medical regimens: A report to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Bethesda, MD: National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.Google Scholar
  41. Logue, P. E., Gentry, W. D., Linnoila, M., & Erwin, C. W. (1978). The effect of alcohol consumption on state anxiety changes in male and female nonalcoholics. American Journal of Psychiatry, 135, 1079–1081.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  42. Marlatt, G. A., & Gordon, J. R. (1980). Determinants of relapse: Implications for the maintenance of behavior change. In P. O. Davidson, & S. M. Davidson (Eds.), Behavioral medicine: Changing health lifestyle. New York: Brunner/Mazel.Google Scholar
  43. Matarazzo, J. D. (1983). Behavioral health: A 1990 challenge for the health sciences professions. In J. D. Matarazzo, N. E. Miller, S. M. Weiss, & J. A. Herd (Eds.), Behavioral health: A handbook of health enhancement and disease prevention. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  44. Mausner, B., & Platt, E. S. (1971). Smoking: A behavioral analysis. New York: Peragamon Press.Google Scholar
  45. McNamee, H. B., Mello, N. K., & Mendelson, J. H. (1968). Experimental analysis of drinking patterns of alcoholics: Concurrent psychiatric observation. American Journal of Psychiatry, 124, 81–87.Google Scholar
  46. Mischel, W. (1973). Toward a cognitive social learning reconceptualization of personality. Psychological Review, 80, 252–283.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Nerenz, D. R., & Leventhal, H. (1983). Self-regulation theory in chronic illness. In T. Burish & L. Bradley (Eds.), Coping with chronic disease: Research and applications. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  48. Pohorecky, L. A. (1981). The interaction of alcohol and stress: A review. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 5(2), 209–229.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Rabkin, S. W., Boyko, E., Wilson, A., & Streja, D. A. (1983). A randomized clinical trial comparing behavior modification and individual counseling in the nutritional thera py of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus: Comparison of the effect on blood sugar, body weight, and serum lipids. Diabetes Care, 6(1), 50–56.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Rodnick, J. E. (1982). Health behavior changes associated with health hazard appraisal counseling in an occupational setting. Preventive Medicine, 11, 583–594.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Rosenstock, I. M. (1966). Why people use health services. Milbank Memorial Fund Quarterly, 44, 94.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Schachter, S. (1973). Nesbitts paradox. In W. C Dunn, (Ed.), Smoking behavior: Motives and incentives. Washington, DC: Winston.Google Scholar
  53. Schafer, L. C, Glasgow, R. E., & McCaul, K. D. (1982). Increasing the adherence of diabetic adolescents. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 5, 353–362.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Society of Actuaries. (1959). Build and blood pressure study (Vols. 1 & 2). Chicago: Society of Actuaries.Google Scholar
  55. Stunkard, A. J. (1979). Behavioral medicine and beyond: The example of obesity. In O. F. Pomerleau & J. P. Brady (Eds.), Behavioral medicine: Theory and practice. Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins.Google Scholar
  56. Suchman, E. A. (1977). Preventive health behavior: A model for research on community health campaigns. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 8, 197.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Wagner, E. H., Beery, W. L., Schoenbach, V. J., & Graham, R. M. (1982). An assessment of health hazard/health risk appraisal. American Journal of Public Health, 72(4), 347–352.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Walford, S., Gale, E. A., Allison, S. P., & Tattersall, R. B. (1978). Self-monitoring of blood glucose. Improvement of diabetic control. Lancet, 1(8067), 732–735.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Wing, R. R., Epstein, L. H., & Nowalk, M. P. (1984). Dietary adherence in patients with diabetes. Behavioral Medicine Update, 6(1), 17–21.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Feuerstein
    • 1
  • Elise E. Labbé
    • 2
  • Andrzej R. Kuczmierczyk
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Rochester School of Medicine and DentistryRochesterUSA
  2. 2.University of Miami School of MedicineMiamiUSA

Personalised recommendations