Methods: A cross-sectional correlative study was designed by using a questionnaire survey. The major variables were 1) the predisposing factors of 'interest in health concerns', 'concern about endocrine disruptors', ‘perception of endocrine disruptors related to female reproductive health’ ; 2) the reinforcing factors of ‘menstrual problems', ’self-appraisal of exposure to endocrine disruptors’, ‘need for information on endocrine disruptors’; and 3) the enabling factors of ‘participation in pro-environmental activity', and 'pro-environmental lifestyle’. The outcome variable was ‘risk behaviors for exposure to endocrine disruptors’. Data were collected from September to October in 2015. A total of 199 female college students in Korea voluntarily participated.
Results: Based on the PRECEDE conceptual framework of the study, the influences of the factors on risk behaviors for exposure to endocrine disruptors were analyzed by a hierarchical regression. In the first step, demographics explained 11.7% (F=27.3, p<.001) of the variance of the risk behaviors of exposure to endocrine disruptors. The second step showed an additional 20.1% variance (F=23.1, p<.001) by adding the predisposing factors. In the third step, reinforcing factors markedly increased the explained variance to 55.4% (F=36.1, p<.001), which added 24.7% more. Finally, by adding the enabling factors, 61.7% (F=36.4, p<.001) of the variance was explained.
Conclusion: Women with less sense of need for information about endocrine disruptors and a poor pro-environmental lifestyle engage in more risk behaviors for exposure to endocrine disruptors. Education should include practical information about environmental hormones and should focus on leading young women to a pro-environmental lifestyle.
“This research was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea(NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education(NRF-2015R1D1A3A01017746)”