Reducing barriers to exercise can save women's lives

11/07/05

ST. LOUIS - Nov. 8, 2005 - A recent study in the Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners explores the difficulties faced by women in developing a healthy lifestyle to avoid coronary heart disease (CHD) a leading killer of women in the US. Women have perceived barriers to modifying their risk of CHD. The most commonly cited barriers were related to exercise, including family commitments interfering with exercise, laziness, and lack of self-discipline to exercise regularly. The study also found that women with access to a nurse practitioner had fewer perceived barriers to CHD risk modification, suggesting that these perceived barriers can be reduced or eliminated through effective strategies for health promotion behaviors.

"Traditionally, health care providers have focused their education on the benefits of lifestyle modification and spent little time considering the difficulties women encounter when trying to implement those behavior changes," states lead author of the article, Joanne L. Thanavaro. "Healthcare providers need to recognize how important a woman's perceived barriers to risk factor modification are and use methods to help reduce or eliminate these barriers."

CHD accounts for one half millions deaths each year. The majority of CHD can be prevented or delayed with appropriate lifestyle changes.

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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The willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life is the source from which self-respect springs.
-- Joan Didion