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A Latent Profile Analysis of Young Adult Lifestyle Behaviors

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Objective: The aim of this study was to identify lifestyle profiles of young adult males and females based on their alcohol, diet, and exercise behaviors and then link these profiles with health. Method: We used the nationally representative 2017 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS; N = 17,286; 47% female; Mage = 23.22; SD = 3.16; 65% white) to examine profiles of alcohol use, daily fruit and vegetable intake, fried potato intake, and exercise per week using latent profile analysis. Participants also reported the days their general, physical, and mental health were poor and BMI. Results: Five distinct profiles for both males and females were identified: Healthy Eaters/Exercisers, Moderates, Unhealthy Eaters, Medium Drinkers, and Heavy Drinkers. Heavy Drinkers and Unhealthy Eaters reported the most days of poor mental and physical health. Conclusions: Heavy drinkers and unhealthy eaters had the highest number of days of poor health, which also places them at risk for a host of health adversities throughout adulthood. Examining motivations behind young adults' patterns of consumption and activity is an important future direction to identify mechanisms for healthy lifestyle promotion during the transition to adulthood.
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Keywords: BODY MASS INDEX (BMI); DIETARY INTAKE; FRIED FOOD; HEALTH; LATENT PROFILE ANALYSIS; YOUNG ADULTS

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Ryan Grant, University of Arkansas, School of Human Environmental Sciences, Fayetteville, AR 2: Jennifer N. Becnel, Assistant Professor, University of Arkansas, School of Human Environmental Sciences, Fayetteville, AR;, Email: [email protected] 3: Zachary D. Giano, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Arkansas, School of Human Environmental Sciences, Fayetteville, AR 4: Amanda L. Williams, Assistant Professor, University of Arkansas, School of Human Environmental Sciences, Fayetteville, AR 5: Dylan Martinez, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Arkansas, School of Human Environmental Sciences, Fayetteville, AR

Publication date: November 1, 2019

More about this publication?
  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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