Self-reported health status and lifestyle behaviours of the residents of the Town of Fort Erie, Ontario, as related to the Canadian Community Health Survey
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AbstractThe purpose of this cross sectional survey design was to examine self-reported health status and lifestyle behaviours of the residents of the Town of Fort Erie, Ontario, as related to the Canadian Community Health Survey. Using a mail-out survey, entitled the Fort Erie Survey of Health (FESH), a probability cluster sampling technique was used to measure self-reported health status (present health, health conditions, health challenges, functional health limitations) and lifestyle behaviour (smoking, alcohol use, drug use, physical activity, fruit and vegetable consumption, body weight, and gaming). Each variable was described and analyzed in relation to socio-economic variables, age and gender. The findings from this study were compared to the Canadian Community Health Survey 2000/2001. Overall, 640 surveys were completed. The majority of Fort Erie residents rated their present health as good and were satisfied with their overall health and quality of life. The main chronic conditions reported were arthritis, back pain and heart disease. Other main health problems reported were vision, sleeping and chronic pain. Overall, 14.6% smoke; 58.8% engaged in physical activity either occasionally or never as opposed to regularly engaging in physical activity; 52.1% did not eat the required daily fruits and vegetables; and 40.0% were in the overweight category. Persons who practiced one healthy lifestyle behaviour were more likely to practice other healthy promoting behaviours. Therefore, health promotion programs are best designed to address multiple risk factors simultaneously. The ffiSH was generally consistent with the Canadian Community Health Survey in the overall findings. A small number of inconsistencies were identified that require further exploration to determine if they are unique to this community.
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