The lack of social gradient of health behaviors and psychosocial factors in Northern Italy

Roberto De Vogli, Roberto Gnesotto, Michael Goldstein, Ronald Andersen, Giovanni Andrea Cornia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


Objectives: To examine i nequalities in health behaviors and psychosocial factors in Northern Italy. Methods: The study was based on a computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI) of 4 002 non-institutionalized adults livin g in the Veneto region of Italy. Results: Cigarette smoking, binge drinking, fruit and vegetables consumption and stress failed to show a social gradient. Only physical activity was significantly associated with social class. Stress was a significant predictor of physical inactivity, smoking and low fruit and vegetable i ntake. Lack of emotional support was associated with smoking and physical inactivity among males, and low fruit and vegetable intake for both genders. Conclusions: Three proposed explanations may account for the lack of consistent social gradient of health behaviors in Northern Italy: a) socio-economic context; b) uncompleted epidemiological transition of behavioral risk factors across social classes; c) lack of systematic health promotion efforts. Future research is needed to examine the plausibility of such explanations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-205
Number of pages9
JournalSozial- und Praventivmedizin
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2005
Externally publishedYes



  • Health behaviors
  • Italy
  • Psychosocial factors
  • Social class
  • Socio-economic status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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