Chronic disease risk typologies among young adults in community college

Jayne K. Jeffries, Leslie A. Lytle, Daniela Sotres-Alvarez, Shelley Golden, Allison E. Aiello, Laura Linnan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: To address chronic disease risk holistically from a behavioral perspective, insights are needed to refine understanding of the covariance of key health behaviors. This study aims to identify distinct typologies of young adults based on 4 modifiable risk factors of chronic disease using a latent class analysis approach, and to describe patterns of class membership based on demographic characteristics, living arrangements, and weight. Methods: Overall, 441 young adults aged 18-35 attending community colleges in the Minnesota Twin Cities area completed a baseline questionnaire for the Choosing Healthy Options in College Environments and Settings study, a RCT. Behavioral items were used to create indicators for latent classes, and individuals were classified using maximum-probability assignment. Results: Three latent classes were identified: ‘active, binge-drinkers with a healthy dietary intake’ (13.1%); ‘non-active, moderate-smokers and non-drinkers with poor dietary intake’ (38.2%); ‘moderately active, non-smokers and non-drinkers with moderately healthy dietary intake’ (48.7%). Classes exhibited unique demographic and weight-related profiles. Conclusions: This study may contribute to the literature on health behaviors among young adults and provides evidence that there are weight and age differences among subgroups. Understanding how behaviors cluster is important for identifying groups for targeted interventions in community colleges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-84
Number of pages14
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Behavior
Volume42
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2018

Keywords

  • Chronic disease
  • Community college
  • Health behavior
  • Latent class analysis
  • Young adult health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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