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Church-Based Social Relationships, Belonging, and Health Among Older Mexican Americans

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Abstract:

The purpose of this study is to explain how church-based emotional support influences the health of older Mexican Americans. This issue is evaluated with a theoretical model that contains the following core linkages: (1) older Mexican Americans who go to church more often will be more likely to receive emotional support from fellow church members; (2) older Mexican Americans who receive more support from their fellow church members will be more likely to feel they belong in their congregation; (3) older Mexican Americans who feel they belong in their congregation are likely to have a stronger sense of personal control; and (4) older Mexican Americans who have a stronger sense of personal control are likely to enjoy better health. Data from a recent nationwide survey of older Mexican Americans provide support for each of these relationships.

Keywords: Mexican Americans; belonging; health; social support

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-5906.2011.01575.x

Affiliations: 1: Department of Health Education and BehaviorUniversity of Michigan 2: Department of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Florida International University

Publication date: 2011-06-01

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