10-Minute Interventions on Diet, Exercise, Hand Hygiene, and Dental Flossing in 4 Countries

  • R.Schwarzer


Background: The purpose was to examine whether very brief paper-pencil interventions can have an effect in various domains of health behaviour change.Theoretical basis was the health action process approach (HAPA) that makes a distinction between motivational and volitional phases. Methods: A series of leaflet-based interventions were conducted in Poland, India, Iran, and Costa Rica with more than 1,000 participants. Repeated measures analyses of variance were applied to test time by treatment effects, observing treatment and control groups over several weeks. Findings: Modest intervention effects were found for diet, exercise, hand hygiene, and dental flossing. Moreover, mediation and moderation analyses identified the role of social-cognitive variables (intentions, planning, self-efficacy, action control). Discussion: A case has been made in favor of very parsimonious interventions that provide either a starting point for the adoption of health behaviors, or a cue to action that helps to maintain on-going behaviors.
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