OSTEOPOROSIS KNOWLEDGE, HEALTH COMMUNICATION, AND PREVENTION BEHAVIORS AMONG COLLEGE STUDENTS: A CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY AMONG MALE AND FEMALE COLLEGE STUDENTS
Date of Award
M.S.E.S. in Exercise Science
Mary Allison Ford
Thomas L. Andre
Hannah K. Allen
Osteoporosis is a chronic degenerative bone disease affecting roughly 53 million Americans. Attainment of peak bone mass during young adulthood plays an essential role in osteoporosis prevention, and specific behaviors affecting the achievement of peak bone mass include adequate intake of dietary calcium and participation in weight-bearing physical activity. Prior research has established the links between knowledge and health communication, particularly parental communication, with engaging in healthy behaviors such as adequate calcium intake and physical activity among college students, less is known about how these relationships manifest in this population for osteoporosis prevention. Exploring additional factors such as self-efficacy that may moderate these relationships is vital to bridging the gap between health education and health behavior. The purpose of the study was to assess the relationships between health communication, osteoporosis knowledge, and osteoporosis prevention behaviors (i.e., calcium intake and physical activity) while examining the moderating role of self-efficacy on these associations. Utilizing a cross-sectional design, a panel of undergraduate students were invited to complete an online survey that included the Osteoporosis Knowledge Test (OKT), the Osteoporosis Self-efficacy Scale (OSES), the National Osteoporosis Foundation’s Generations of Strength Survey, and the Short Calcium Questionnaire. The survey was administered using the online survey software Qualtrics. Logistic regression models were used to assess the associations between predictor and outcome variables, and an interaction variable was included to explore the potentially moderating effects of self-efficacy. Linear regressions were calculated to assess the associations between osteoporosis knowledge, health communication habits and weight bearing exercise. Furthermore, logistic regressions were calculated to assess associations between health communication, osteoporosis knowledge and engagement in weight bearing exercise. The results suggested the predictor variables were not significant predictors of the outcome variables. However, when regression models were controlled for race, the results suggested Non-Hispanic whites were less likely to meet dietary calcium requirements. We conducted a moderation to assess the influence of self-efficacy on the previously mentioned associations. Osteoporosis self-efficacy did not prove to be a statistically significant moderator. Evidently the results suggests that osteoporosis knowledge and health communication habits are not significant predictors of engagement in preventive behaviors.
Armstrong, Kaitlyn Ashley, "OSTEOPOROSIS KNOWLEDGE, HEALTH COMMUNICATION, AND PREVENTION BEHAVIORS AMONG COLLEGE STUDENTS: A CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY AMONG MALE AND FEMALE COLLEGE STUDENTS" (2021). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2084.
Available for download on Thursday, December 14, 2023