Table of Contents
ISRN Preventive Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 189180, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2013/189180
Research Article

Perceptions of Preventive Health Care and Healthy Lifestyle Choices for Low Income Families: A Qualitative Study

1Texas A&M University, Department of Psychology, MS 4235, College Station, TX 77843, USA
2University of Hawai’i Cancer Center, Epidemiology Program, Honolulu, HI 96813, USA

Received 7 February 2013; Accepted 1 March 2013

Academic Editors: U. Abdel-Motal, C. Grandjean, and X. Yao

Copyright © 2013 Sasha A. Fleary et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

This paper examines Head Start parents’ perceptions of preventive health and healthy lifestyle choices and Head Start administrators’ perceptions of the needs of parents they serve. To address the preventive health of the population, it is necessary that we explore perceptions, risks, and protective factors of preventive health. Focus groups were conducted with parents and administrators to elicit this information and to obtain suggestions for improving preventive health and healthy lifestyle choices among this group. Overall, nutrition and physical activity emerged as themes in parents’ definition of preventive health and healthy lifestyle choices. They further identified social support and education as major protective factors for engaging in preventive health and healthy lifestyle choices. Results of this study can be used to inform research and practice to develop interventions to increase preventive health and healthy lifestyle choices among low income families.