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Preventive Health Behaviour and Adaptive Accuracy of Risk Perceptions


Renner, B and Schuez, BEC and Sniehotta, FF, Preventive Health Behaviour and Adaptive Accuracy of Risk Perceptions, Risk Analysis, 28, (3) pp. 741-744. ISSN 1539-6924 (2008) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1539-6924.2008.01047.x


This study examined the relation between health behavior and risk perceptions in the context of an acute livestock epidemic. Participants in a longitudinal web-based survey (N =195) were asked to report their meat consumption and their perceived risk in relation to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) and other related livestock diseases. Cross-sectional analyses at both measurement points (T1 and T2) showed that participants with low levels of preventive nutrition (high meat consumption) felt more at risk for BSE-related diseases than those reporting comparable higher levels of preventive behavior (low meat consumption), indicating relative accuracy. These results suggest that people recognize when their behavior is risky. More importantly, perceived risk also showed adaptive accuracy from a change perspective: increases in preventive nutrition from T1 to T2 were significantly associated with decreases in perceived risk between T1 and T2. Possible foundations and implications of an adaptive accuracy of risk perceptions are discussed.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Accuracy; bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE); health behavior change; risk
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Clinical and health psychology
Research Field:Health psychology
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Food safety
UTAS Author:Schuez, BEC (Dr Benjamin Schuez)
ID Code:75058
Year Published:2008
Web of Science® Times Cited:25
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2012-01-05
Last Modified:2022-11-04

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