HEALTH PROMOTING BEHAVIOR AMONG COLLEGE STUDENTS IN CHANDIGARH, INDIA
Background: India faces multiple threats of diseases. The increasing trend of lifestyle related health problems is becoming a serious issue in India. The best strategy to tackle this changing health concern is adoption of healthy lifestyle and health promotion activities. Objectives: To determine the level of involvement in health promoting behaviors of college students in Chandigarh. Material & Methods: This college based cross sectional study was conducted in four randomly selected colleges of Chandigarh during September 2007 to June 2008. Results: Two hundred students (F=100, M=100) were studied by using self administered health promoting lifestyle profile (HPLP) questionnaires. Mean HPLP score was 138.69 (M=137.98, F=139.39). Female students were more likely to have better health promoting practices than their counterpart male students, but difference was not significant. Female students showed more sense of health responsibility than male students (p=0.00), whereas male students were significantly more involved in physical activities than female students (p=0.02). Overall, only few students (18.5%) searched health related article from the internet; 26% went for normal health check up in the last year; 13.5% students practiced yoga regularly; 24.5% of them tried to choose diet with low fat content; 30% of them skipped meals regularly, and 25.5% of them ate processed food regularly. Conclusion: The study results showed that college students in Chandigarh had reasonably good orientation towards health promoting practices.