Determinants of incentive preferences for health behavior change in Japan

Health Promot Int. 2019 Aug 1;34(4):760-769. doi: 10.1093/heapro/day031.


Interest in the use of incentives to promote health behavior change has been growing worldwide. However, to develop an effective incentive program, accurate information regarding individual preferences is essential. Therefore, the aim of this study was to clarify determinants of incentive preferences for health behavior change. A self-completed questionnaire survey regarding incentives for health behavior change was conducted in a Japanese village in 2015. The outcome measures were individual preferences for features of incentives, including item, frequency, type and value. The types of incentives were defined as follows: assured-type (given for participation); effort-type (given if participants make some kind of effort); and outcome-type (given if participants make achievements decided a priori). The associations with respondents' sex, age, presence of lifestyle-related disease and stage in the transtheoretical model of health behavior change were investigated using multivariate analysis. A total of 1469 residents responded to the survey. Significant associations with preference for different incentive features were found as follows: for monetary items, female and elderly; for high frequency, female and maintenance stage; for effort-type, male, action stage and contemplation stage; and for outcome-type, maintenance stage and action stage. Our results appeared to identify determinants of incentive preferences for health behavior change. These findings are expected to promote the development of an incentive program more in tune with individual preferences.

Keywords: health behaviour; health promotion programs.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Biobehavioral Sciences
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Promotion / methods
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Life Style
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires