Exploring Chinese-Canadians' perspectives on health : a quantitative study
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Chinese have unique perspectives on health and illness, which is mostly umecognized by western medicine. Immigration may contribute to problems with health consultations, inconvenience, and dissatisfaction. As the largest visible minority in Canada, Chinese- Canadians' perspectives on health should be studied in order to help Chinese immigrants adapt to a new health-care and health-promotion system, and keep them healthy. A quantitative questionnaire was designed based on the findings from a pilot study and previous literature. A hundred participants were recruited from Toronto, Vancouver, Halifax, and St. Catharines. Descriptive analysis and correlation analysis were used to investigate the structure of the variables. Findings indicated that most oftheir attitudes and corresponding practices to the different health aspects were positive. The relation between dietary practices and attitude was only found in small cities. Their attitudes were impacted by their length of stay in Canada. Their attitudes to regularly timed meals and psychological consultation were related to their acculturation level, as was the regularity of their practice of dental flossing. Their self-evaluated general health levels were also found to be affected by their medical history, education level, feeling to talk about • sexual health, and smoking, particularly in the male subjects of the study. In conclusion, they realized that each health aspect w~s important to their health. However, their practices did not bear a strong relation to their beliefs. Traditional thoughts about health reseeded with time. Acculturation level did not affect most of their attitudes or practices. Under pressure, the priority of the daily health practices decreased. Older persons, those with low incomes, lower education levels or families under stress need to pay more attention to their health level. In-depth future research was recommended.