Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Prev Med. 2000 Aug;31(2 Pt 1):140-7.

Prevalence and co-occurrence of health risk behaviors among high-risk drinkers in a primary care population.

Author information

  • 1Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts, 01655, USA.



Approximately 10% of patients seen in the primary care setting meet criteria for high-risk (HR) drinking. Little data are available about the co-occurrence of other risk behaviors (RBs) in this population. This study examines the co-occurrence of smoking, poor diet, and sedentariness, and several change-related variables, among 479 HR drinkers participating in Project Health, a NIAAA-funded study testing the effectiveness of a provider-delivered intervention to reduce HR drinking.


Data were collected at study entry via standardized interview and questionnaire.


The prevalence of additional RBs among HR drinkers was smoking, 35%; poor diet, 28%; and sedentariness, 44%. In addition to HR drinking, 67% of participants had at least one RB, and 61% reported smoking, sedentariness, or both. Perception of drinking as a problem was generally low (20%), as was intention to change drinking. Seventy-two percent of participants with multiple RBs perceived at least one of these RBs as a problem. Younger, unmarried, less-educated, blue-collar, and non-working participants were more likely to have multiple RBs than white-collar workers.


Additional RBs are common among HR drinkers and may increase their already elevated health risks. Implications of these findings for interventions integrating multiple RBs into primary care settings are discussed.

Copyright 2000 American Health Foundation and Academic Press.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk