THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ACCULTURATION, PSYCHOLOGICAL MEASURES, AND HEALTH RISKS IN COLLEGE-AGED MEXICAN-AMERICAN WOMEN
V.M.Martinez, D. Wittenburg, J. Montoya, & L. Medina
University of Texas at Brownsville, Brownsville, TX
Acculturation is associated with certain health related risk behaviors such as physical inactivity. However, research is sparse on the association between acculturation and health perceptions that encourage positive exercise behaviors. PURPOSE: To investigate the relationships between psychological measures, exercise behaviors, and health markers among college-aged Mexican-American (MA) women. METHODS: Body fat (BF), body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference (WC) measures were examined in 89 women (M age = 22.83). The ARMSA-II was used to examine Anglo Orientation (AO), Mexican Orientation (MO), and Acculturation. The Exercise Benefits and Barriers Scale (EBBS) was used to determine perceived exercise benefits. The Psychological Need Satisfaction in Exercise Scale (PNSE) was used to examine perceived competence (PCo) and psychological need (PN) for exercise. The International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) assessed vigorous physical activity (VPA). RESULTS: There were significant relationships between AO, exercise benefit life enhancement (LE) (r=.22, p=.04), PCo (r=.21 p=.04), PN (r=.22, p=.04), and VPA (r=.23, p=.03). Mediation analysis indicated that perceived benefit LE influenced the relationship between AO and PCo. PCo associated with reduced WC (r=-.29, p=.01), BMI (r=-.23, p=.05), and BF (r=-.33, p=.01). A second mediation analysis indicated that PN influenced the relationship between AO and VPA. PN was associated with reduced WC (r=-.22, p=.04) and BF (r=-.28, p=.01). CONCLUSIONS: MA females with a stronger identification to the Anglo culture perceive exercise as life enhancing, are more motivated to exercise, and had reduced negative markers associated with health risk factors compared to those with a stronger Mexican culture identity. Given that acculturation was associated with positive health perceptions and exercise behaviors, it can be suggested a successful intervention must tailor to language acculturation differences that may result in greater positive health outcomes in college-aged MA women.
Martinez, V.M.; Wittenburg, D.; Montoya, J.; and Medina, L.
"THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ACCULTURATION, PSYCHOLOGICAL MEASURES, AND HEALTH RISKS IN COLLEGE-AGED MEXICAN-AMERICAN WOMEN,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Proceedings:
1, Article 27.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijesab/vol8/iss1/27
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