Perceived behavioral control (PBC) and intention, the proximal predictors from the theory of planned behavior (TPB), were used to predict cardiovascular risk behaviors in 597 patients 1 year after diagnosis with coronary heart disease. The outcome measures were self-report measures of exercise plus objective measures of fitness (distance walked in 6 min) and cotinine-confirmed smoking cessation. In multivariate analyses incorporating both PBC and intention, PBC predicted exercise, distance walked, and smoking cessation, but intention was not a reliable independent predictor of any health behavior measured. Thus, the effective theoretical component of the TPB was PBC. Similar predictions could derive from social-cognitive theory. In coronary patients, behavioral change needs to address issues of action implementation rather than motivational factors alone.
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