Health Promotion Among Diverse Populations


Grand Canyon University

Health Promotion Among Diverse Populations

NRS-429 VN


The Health Assessment Tool can when used to review individual’s cultural beliefs, it serves as a dependable maintenance, restoration and protection tool. It’s an evaluation that aids in meeting the needs of different populations to provide efficient care. The objective of this paper is to investigate the Hispanic, European American and the author’s own personal cultural views from a health and wellness standpoint. Another aim is to compare and contrast various families and health traditions to aid in the provision of holistic optimal health delivery. A heritage assessment tool is a means to capture a snapshot view of one’s culture. Culture as defined Edelman and Mandle is – “an element of ethnicity that consists of shared patterns of values and behaviors that characterize a particular group”. According to them, culture is – “shaped by values, beliefs, norms and practices that are shared by members of the same cultural group” (Edelman & Mandle, 2006). It is becoming more prominent in nursing education that there is time devoted to educating nurses on the importance of being culturally aware and how to institute it into their everyday practice of providing care in an evolving community. My research using the heritage assessment tool explored the European American, Latino American and African American and here’s some insight into some common denominators of all three worlds.

During my European American survey, my friend stated that she is not particularly unique, as she lacks culture. “European-Americans have never experienced an honest cohesive experience. Instead of one culture and people…Caucasian America is simply a loosely associated subcultures combined non-cultures.” (Stratis Health Culture Care Connection, 2013) Their diets is typically similar to an American’s diet, one that is high in salty foods, processed foods, red meat, sugary desserts and alcohol. Western medicine plays a huge role and is preferred by the people but there’s also a spur of interest in incorporating other beliefs such as herbs, acupuncture, massage therapy etc. European Americans believe in constant screenings, yearly exams and preventative measures by means of flu shots and vaccinations. Some of the top causes of death among this population in this culture are cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, hypertension and stroke.

One of the people I interviewed was my sister who is of an African American descent like me. We had moved to the United States when I was 25 and she was 23. My parents were both 52 and 55. We were raised in the Christian faith and attended church every Sunday. Also believe in prayers and faith in God to heal the sick due to believe that sickness is a result of sin or as a result of occult powers. Our diet is rich in species and flavors and dinner is the main meal of the day, where the entire family sits and enjoys one another. The rate of smoking and obesity is high among African Americans by an average of 40% in comparison to other minorities in the US. (Health Journal, 2009). Vaccines are not readily available so communicable diseases can run rampant consequently they exhibit a greater risk for heart disease and lower life expectancy. African Americans tend to seek medical intervention only when complications arise and don’t practice precautionary medicine because they do not have trust in the medical and health community and their trust in God for healing.

Mexican Americans forms the quickly increasing minority populations and largest Hispanic group currently living in the US (Spector, 2004; U.S. Department of Commerce, 2001). The subject of my survey was born in Chihuahua, Mexico and herself and family moved to United State in 1989 when she was 14 years of age. Even while living in the United States, they maintained their diet which consist of corn and corn products, beans, rice and breads which is high in complex carbohydrates, eggs, fish, shellfish and a variety of pork and poultry which contains an adequate amount of protein. Popular fruits are tomatoes, sweet potatoes, avocado, mango etc. Most people in this culture are of the Roman Catholic religion and sometimes plays an even greater role in times of illnesses. Like African Americans, they also show a little hesitance as far as incorporating Western medicine into daily life. The leading causes of death for this culture are Cancer and Heart Diseases.

The three families interviewed had something in common, they all go to church and are all family oriented as well; but they view health and illness differently, for example European American embrace western medicine but still belief in herb and acupuncture. African Americans believe in prayers and faith in God to heal the sick due to believe that sickness is a result of sin or as a result of occult powers. Mexican Americans also have some hesitations when it comes to health care due to religious belief because most of them are Catholic and believe in Holy Communion. It does not matter what the health believe or health practice is, Health maintenance, promotion and restoration is the nurses focus at the end of the day. Health maintenances has to do with the ways and approach taking to prevent illness, conserve function and improve health (Mosby, 2014). Health promotion focused on preventing, improving and management of health for good health outcome. Health promotion is crucial at all level of care including primary, secondary and tertiary. Restoration of health is helping an individual get to a point of functioning without external help. Protection is simply preservation of health on a daily basis. (Spector, 2014). Nurse as advocates, promoters, and educators, needs the heritage assessment tool in order to pinpoint different cultural believes, this will not only build trust between the nurse and the patient, it will also help to provide safe and effective care to both patients and their families.


African American Health: MedlinePlus. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from

Ohioline. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from

Heritage Assessment Topic: Evaluation of different Cultures and Individual views of Health. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from