Physician advice on exercise and diet in a U.S. sample of obese Mexican-American adults

Am J Health Promot. Jul-Aug 2011;25(6):402-9. doi: 10.4278/ajhp.090918-QUAN-305.

Abstract

Purpose: To document the prevalence of obese Mexican-Americans never advised by health professionals regarding exercise and diet, and to determine risk factors for no advice.

Methods: Data came from 1787 obese Mexican-American adults (body mass index ≥30; age ≥18 years) in the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. The survey included self-reported receipt of health care provider advice on exercise and diet as well as sociodemographic, health-related, and provider-related factors. Multivariable logistic regression models were performed separately for advice regarding exercise and advice regarding diet.

Results: Overall, 45% of respondents reported that they had never received advice from a doctor or health care professional to exercise more, and 52% reported that they have received advice to eat fewer higher-fat/high-cholesterol foods. Men, nonmarried respondents, lower-educated respondents, those who preferred to speak Spanish at home, and those without comorbid chronic conditions were less likely to receive advice.

Discussion: Results suggest that obese Mexican-Americans are insufficiently advised by health care providers regarding exercise and diet. Given the seriousness of obesity-related health risks and the increasing prevalence of overweight status and obesity among Mexican-Americans, it is vital that providers are involved in finding ways to effectively educate and/or treat overweight patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Body Mass Index
  • Counseling / statistics & numerical data*
  • Diet*
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Health Behavior / ethnology*
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Mexican Americans / psychology*
  • Mexican Americans / statistics & numerical data
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / epidemiology
  • Obesity / therapy*
  • Physician-Patient Relations*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / statistics & numerical data*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult