RxPG News Feed for RxPG News

Medical Research Health Special Topics World
  Home
 
   Health
 Aging
 Asian Health
 Events
 Fitness
 Food & Nutrition
 Happiness
 Men's Health
 Mental Health
 Occupational Health
 Parenting
 Public Health
 Sleep Hygiene
 Women's Health
 
   Healthcare
 Africa
 Australia
 Canada Healthcare
 China Healthcare
 India Healthcare
 New Zealand
 South Africa
 UK
 USA
 World Healthcare
 
 Latest Research
 Aging
 Alternative Medicine
 Anaethesia
 Biochemistry
 Biotechnology
 Cancer
 Cardiology
 Clinical Trials
 Cytology
 Dental
 Dermatology
 Embryology
 Endocrinology
 ENT
 Environment
 Epidemiology
 Gastroenterology
 Genetics
 Gynaecology
 Haematology
 Immunology
 Infectious Diseases
 Medicine
 Metabolism
 Microbiology
 Musculoskeletal
 Nephrology
 Neurosciences
 Obstetrics
 Ophthalmology
 Orthopedics
 Paediatrics
 Pathology
 Pharmacology
 Physiology
 Physiotherapy
 Psychiatry
 Radiology
 Rheumatology
 Sports Medicine
 Surgery
 Toxicology
 Urology
 
   Medical News
 Awards & Prizes
 Epidemics
 Launch
 Opinion
 Professionals
 
   Special Topics
 Ethics
 Euthanasia
 Evolution
 Feature
 Odd Medical News
 Climate

Last Updated: Feb 19, 2013 - 1:22:36 AM
Research Article
Latest Research Channel

subscribe to Latest Research newsletter
Latest Research

   EMAIL   |   PRINT
Obesity coverage in black newspapers is mostly negative, MU study finds

Feb 14, 2013 - 5:00:00 AM
Lee encourages newspapers, particularly ones with primarily African-American audiences, to write health stories with positive tones. Instead of stories about increasing obesity rates, she says stories promoting promising new research or positive trends in African-American health would be much more effective in motivating African Americans to make healthier choices.

 
[RxPG] COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Obesity rates have increased dramatically in the last few decades. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, African Americans make up more than 60 percent of the overweight and obese population, while only 13 percent of the total population. A new study from the University of Missouri School of Journalism shows that American newspapers, and specifically newspapers geared toward an African-American audience, frame stories on obesity in a negative way. Hyunmin Lee, who performed her research while a doctoral student at MU, says this negative framing could have damaging effects on African Americans looking to lose weight.

Previous research has shown that African Americans do not respond positively to negative news stories about obesity and health issues, said Lee, who is now an assistant professor at St. Louis University. Our study shows that the majority of obesity news stories are written in a negative tone, mainly attributing individual responsibilities to overcome obesity, which means many African Americans in need of weight loss could be discouraged by what they are reading in newspapers, instead of being inspired by positive success stories about overcoming obesity or other health problems.

Lee and Maria Len-Rios, an associate professor in the MU School of Journalism, examined 35 newspapers, 23 of them African-American newspapers, and analyzed nearly 400 news stories about obesity. They found that nearly all of those stories were written with negative tones emphasizing individual responsibilities for overcoming obesity. News stories with negative tones include stories about high obesity rates among African Americans and health issues that are caused by obesity.

The majority of the obesity news stories we analyzed focused on individual responsibilities and solutions that may not be achievable for many African Americans, Lee said. Even the stories that offered advice on ways to fight obesity were framed negatively. That advice was heavily attributed to individual responsibilities such as exercise and diet control, which are messages that are often ineffective at motivating African Americans to be healthy for socio-economic and cultural reasons.

Lee encourages newspapers, particularly ones with primarily African-American audiences, to write health stories with positive tones. Instead of stories about increasing obesity rates, she says stories promoting promising new research or positive trends in African-American health would be much more effective in motivating African Americans to make healthier choices.

Newspapers focused on writing health stories that only emphasize individual responsibilities are missing the bigger picture of social responsibility, Lee said. To make a constructive impact on the community, health stories that mention societal responsibilities are a necessity while avoiding advice solely focused on individual responsibility. This is because many health news stories do not consider that their audiences may live in food deserts or lack the facilities or ability to exercise safely where they live. Telling someone they have to do things that they physically cannot do to be healthy can have very discouraging and counterproductive effects on an audience that needs as much encouragement as possible.



Related Latest Research News
Moderate to severe psoriasis linked to chronic kidney disease, say experts
Licensing deal marks coming of age for University of Washington, University of Alabama-Birmingham
Simple blood or urine test to identify blinding disease
Physician job satisfaction driven by quality of patient care
Book explores undiscovered economics of everyday life
Gene and stem cell therapy combination could aid wound healing
Solving the internet capacity crunch
Breathing new life into preterm baby research
Perceptions of the role of the state shape water services provision
UltraHaptics -- it's magic in the air

Subscribe to Latest Research Newsletter

Enter your email address:


 Feedback
For any corrections of factual information, to contact the editors or to send any medical news or health news press releases, use feedback form

Top of Page

 
Contact us

RxPG Online

Nerve

 

    Full Text RSS

© All rights reserved by RxPG Medical Solutions Private Limited (India)