Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Adolesc Health. 2004 Apr;34(4):330-8.

The influence of parental occupation and the pupils' educational level on lifestyle behaviors among adolescents in Belgium.

Author information

  • 1Department of Public Health, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium.



To analyze the associations of lifestyle behaviors with educational level and social background based on parental occupation in adolescence.


Data from secondary school pupils participating in the Belgian (Flemish) Health Behavior in School-aged Children (HBSC) survey of the year 2002 (N = 12,490) were analyzed. Multiple logistic regressions adjusting for age and gender were used to assess the effects of parental occupation and pupil educational level on the selected lifestyle behaviors.


Pupils of lower educational level reported less healthy food habits, less teeth brushing, less seatbelt use, more TV watching, more smoking, more drunkenness, more use of hashish, and more lifetime use of Ecstasy. Pupils of parents with lower socioeconomic status (SES) (based on the occupation of the head of the household) reported less healthy food habits, less teeth brushing, more TV watching, and less seatbelt use. Daily smoking and the lifetime use of Ecstasy varied among pupils of different parental occupation, although the effect disappeared when the pupils' educational level was introduced into the models. Regular drunkenness and regular use of hashish did not vary among pupils of different SES backgrounds. However, after controlling for educational level, an effect of parental occupation on regular hashish use became visible, with a higher percentage of regular users among the pupils of higher parental occupation.


A lower educational level is associated with higher prevalence of indicators of an unhealthy lifestyle. The results are less straightforward for the relationship between SES and lifestyle behaviors.

[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