Author(s): Arcury TA, Grzywacz JG, Bell RA, Neiberg RH, Lang W,
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: Guided by the self-regulatory model, we describe the proportions of older adults who include herbal remedies in their health self-management, determining differences in herb use in terms of personal and health characteristics, indicators of culture, and personal resources. METHODS: Data were from the 2002 National Health Interview Survey, which included a supplement on the use of herbal remedies. We limited the present analysis to adults aged 65 and older who were Black, Hispanic, Asian, or White. RESULTS: Herbs were an important component of the health self-management of older adults. Whereas about one quarter of Asian and Hispanic elders used herbal remedies, about 10\% of Black and White elders used them. Older adults differed by ethnicity in the herbs they used and their reasons for using herbs. Predictors of herb use included gender, age, and health status. Ethnicity and region of the country, indicators of culture, and education, a personal resource, were significant predictors of herb use when personal and health characteristics were controlled. DISCUSSION: A complex set of factors is associated with the inclusion of herbs in the health self-management of older adults, with cultural and personal resources being extremely important.
This article was published in J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
and referenced in Epidemiology: Open Access