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Egan M.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office | Katikireddi S.V.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office | Kearns A.,University of Glasgow | Tannahill C.,Glasgow Center for Population Health | And 2 more authors.
American Journal of Public Health | Year: 2013

Objectives. We took advantage of a 2-intervention natural experiment to investigate the impacts of neighborhood demolition and housing improvement on adult residents' mental and physical health. Methods. We identified a longitudinal cohort (n = 1041, including intervention and control participants) by matching participants in 2 randomly sampled cross-sectional surveys conducted in 2006 and 2008 in 14 disadvantaged neighborhoods of Glasgow, United Kingdom. We measured residents' selfreported health with Medical Outcomes Study Short Form Health Survey version 2 mean scores. Results. After adjustment for potential confounders and baseline health, mean mental and physical health scores for residents living in partly demolished neighborhoods were similar to the control group (mental health, b = 2.49; 95% confidence interval [CI] = -1.25, 6.23; P = .185; physical health, b = -0.24; 95% CI = -2.96, 2.48; P = .859). Mean mental health scores for residents experiencing housing improvement were higher than in the control group (b = 2.41; 95% CI = 0.03, 4.80; P = .047); physical health scores were similar between groups (b = -0.66; 95% CI = -2.57, 1.25; P = .486). Conclusions. Our findings suggest that housing improvement may lead to small, short-term mental health benefits. Physical deterioration and demolition of neighborhoods do not appear to adversely affect residents' health. Source

Green M.J.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office | Espie C.A.,University of Glasgow | Hunt K.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office | Benzeval M.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office
Sleep | Year: 2012

Study Objectives: The natural history of insomnia symptomatology is poorly understood. Cross-sectional associations have been demonstrated among socioeconomic disadvantage, female sex, and poor sleep but it is unclear how these social factors predict patterns of insomnia symptoms over time. The aim of this article is to describe longitudinal patterns of insomnia symptoms as people age and investigate how they vary by sex and occupational class. Design: A prospective cohort study with 20 yr of follow-up from 1987 to 1988. Setting: West of Scotland. Participants: One cohort approximately 36 yr of age at baseline aging to 57 yr (n = 1,444), and another aging from approximately 56 to 76 yr (n = 1,551). Interventions: N/A. Measurements and Results: At approximately 5-yr intervals, respondents self-reported trouble initiating and maintaining sleep. Latent class analysis identified 4 main sleep patterns: a healthy pattern with little sleeping trouble across the 20 yr; an episodic pattern, characterized by trouble maintaining sleep; a chronic pattern with trouble maintaining and initiating sleep throughout the study; and a pattern where symptoms developed during the 20-yr follow-up. Chronic patterns were more likely in the older cohort than the younger one, for women than men in the older cohort, and for those from a manual rather than a nonmanual occupational class in both cohorts. In the middle-aged cohort a developing pattern was more likely for women than men. Conclusions: Chronic symptoms, characterized by both trouble maintaining and initiating sleep, are patterned by social factors. Source

Rawlins E.,University of Bristol | Baker G.,University of Edinburgh | Maynard M.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office | Harding S.,Medical Research Council Chief Scientist Office
Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics | Year: 2013

Background: Ethnicity is a consistent correlate of obesity; however, little is known about the perceptions and beliefs that may influence engagement with obesity prevention programmes among ethnic minority children. Barriers to (and facilitators of) healthy lifestyles were examined in the qualitative arm of the London (UK) DiEt and Active Living (DEAL) study. Methods: Children aged 8-13 years and their parents, from diverse ethnic groups, were recruited through schools and through places of worship. Thirteen focus group sessions were held with 70 children (n = 39 girls) and eight focus groups and five interviews with 43 parents (n = 34 mothers). Results: Across ethnic groups, dislike of school meals, lack of knowledge of physical activity guidelines for children and negativity towards physical education at school among girls, potentially hindered healthy living. Issues relating to families' wider neighbourhoods (e.g. fast food outlets; lack of safety) illustrated child and parental concerns that environments could thwart intentions for healthy eating and activity. By contrast, there was general awareness of key dietary messages and an emphasis on dietary variety and balance. For ethnic minorities, places of worship were key focal points for social support. Discourse around the retention of traditional practices, family roles and responsibilities, and religion highlighted both potential facilitators (e.g. the importance of family meals) and barriers (reliance on convenience stores for traditional foods). Socio-economic circumstances intersected with key themes, within and between ethnic groups. Conclusions: Several barriers to (and facilitators of) healthy lifestyles were common across ethnic groups. Diversity of cultural frameworks not only were more nuanced, but also shaped lifestyles for minority children. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics © 2013 The British Dietetic Association262 April 2013 10.1111/j.1365-277X.2012.01280.x Research Paper Public Health Nutrition and Epidemiology © 2012 The Authors Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics © 2012 The British Dietetic Association Ltd.. Source

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