The influence of routine and leisure family activities on the ability of young Asian Americans to maintain a healthy lifestyle: findings from a nationwide survey

Shahmir H. Ali, Rejowana Rouf, Farhan M. Mohsin, Gabriella Meltzer, Priyanshi Sharma, Ralph J. DiClemente

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Family is uniquely influential in the health of young Asian Americans (AAs), yet little is known on the impact of specific shared family activities. This study explores different types and frequencies of AA young adult shared family activities on perceived familial influence on the ability to maintain a healthy lifestyle (diet, physical activity, sleep, social relationships, stress, and risky substances). A nationwide sample of 18–35-year-old AAs was surveyed in March 2021 on a list of 30 shared family activities with mothers, fathers, siblings, or extended family. Overall, 984 unique family relationships reported by 616 young AAs were analyzed. Confirmatory factor analysis synthesized a reliable two-factor (routine, leisure activities) 10-item Shared Activities with Family (SAF) scale. Mothers were most influential (mean 3.25, SD = 1.14), although shared activities among South Asians or with extended family were most associated with changes in perceived influence. Routine shared activities were more strongly associated with perceived influence on sleep, diet, and risky substances, while leisure shared activities were more associated with influence on developing healthy social relationships. Family-based, dyadic interventions for young AAs may incorporate shared activities (both routine and leisure) to promote healthy behaviors, although further research to explore mechanisms and directionality of influence is needed to inform action.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Behavioral Medicine
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • Asian American
  • Family
  • Leisure
  • Lifestyle
  • Multigenerational
  • Parents
  • Routine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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