Many See No Need to Modify Unhealthy Lifestyle
Written by Editor   
Tuesday, July 25, 2017 08:30 AM

A Canadian population-based study found that while people with unhealthy habits know they should change generally, 1 in 5 of the highest-risk patients endorsed no need to do so.

Barriers to adopting healthy behaviors were reported by 55.5% of those who said they should improve their health. Common barriers included self-discipline, work schedule, and family responsibilities (cost, stress, lack of available resources, and transportation were each cited only 5% of the time).

In general, having more potentially modifiable risk factors correlated with an individual’s perceived need to improve his or her health. Of those at highest cardiac risk (with five risk factors or more), 82.3% agreed that they should improve their health.

The risk factors most likely to coax people to want to improve their health were:

  • Smoking 
  • Obesity
  • Low physical activity
  • High stress
  • Low fruit and vegetable consumption 

Hypertension, diabetes, and excessive alcohol intake did not correlate with desire to improve daily habits.

The authors of the study concluded “a substantial proportion of individuals at risk for cardiovascular events do not feel a need to improve their physical health, indicating an urgent need to identify means to modify public health perceptions and behaviors.”