Prayer and Spiritual Practices for Health Reasons among American Adults: The Role of Race and Ethnicity
Purchase on Springer.com
$39.95 / €34.95 / £29.95*
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.
Many studies find racial differences in prayer and religious practices, but few reports examine factors that help explain the effects of Hispanic ethnicity or African American race. A national survey conducted in 2002 collected data on 10 non-religious spiritual practices as well as on prayer for health reasons in 22,929 adults aged 18 years and over. We found marked racial and ethnic differences in the use of prayer and other spiritual practices for health reasons. Greater proportions of African Americans and Hispanic Americans than European Americans reported prayer for health reasons. Sociodemographic variables and health status could not explain these differences. Further, among those who reported prayer, African Americans were more likely than European Americans to report being prayed for by others. However, African American women and Hispanic women and men were significantly less likely than European Americans to use other spiritual practices such as meditation and Tai Chi. Surprisingly African American men were just as likely to report these practices as European American men. Sociodemographic variables and health status could not explain these differences.
- Adams, P. F., & Barnes, P. M. (2006). Summary health statistics for the U.S. population: National health interview survey, 2004. Vital Health Statistics, 10, 1–104.
- Adams, P. F., & Schoenborn, C. A. (2006). Health behaviors of adults: United States, 2002–04. Vital Health Statistics, 10, 1–140.
- Agresti, A. (1990). Categorical data analysis, Wiley series in probability and mathematical statistics. Applied probability and statistics. New York: Wiley.
- Agresti, A. (2002). Categorical data analysis (2nd ed.). Wiley series in probability and statistics. New York: Wiley-Interscience.
- Arredondo, E. M., Elder, J. P., Ayala, G. X., Campbell, N. R., & Baquero, B. (2005). Is church attendance associated with Latinas’ health practices and self-reported health? American Journal of Health Behavior, 29(6), 502–511.
- Astin, J. A. (1998). Why patients use alternative medicine. Journal of the American Medical Association, 279, 1548–1553. doi:10.1001/jama.279.19.1548. CrossRef
- Barnes, P. M., Powell-Griner, E., McFann, K., & Nahin, R. L. (2004). Complementary and alternative medicine use among adults: United States, 2002. Advance Data, 27, 1–19.
- Brown, C. M., Barner, J. C., Richards, K. M., & Bohman, T. M. (2007). Patterns of complementary and alternative medicine use in African Americans. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine (New York N.Y.), 13, 751–758. doi:10.1089/acm.2006.6392. CrossRef
- Chao, M. T., & Wade, C. M. (2008). Socioeconomic factors and women’s use of complementary and alternative medicine in four racial/ethnic groups. Ethnicity & Disease, 18, 65–71.
- Christiano, K. J., Swatos, W. H., Jr., & Kivisto, P. (2002). Sociology of religion: Contemporary developments. Walnut Creek, CA: Altamira Press.
- DuBois, W. E. B. (1887/2000). DuBois on religion. (P. Zukerman, Ed.). New York: Alta Mira.
- Eisenberg, D. M., Davis, R. B., Ettner, S. L., Appel, S., Wilkey, S., Van Rompay, M., et al. (1998). Trends in alternative medicine use in the United States, 1990–1997: Results of a follow-up national survey. Journal of the American Medical Association, 280, 1569–1575. doi:10.1001/jama.280.18.1569. CrossRef
- Eisenberg, D. M., Kessler, R. C., Foster, C., Norlock, F. E., Calkins, D. R., & Delbanco, T. L. (1993). Unconventional medicine in the United States—prevalence, cost, and patterns of use. The New England Journal of Medicine, 328, 246–252. doi:10.1056/NEJM199301283280406. CrossRef
- Ellison, C. G., & Levin, J. S. (1998). The religion-health connection: evidence, theory and future directions. Health Education & Behavior, 25, 700–720. doi:10.1177/109019819802500603. CrossRef
- Geronimus, A. T., & Thompson, J. P. (2004). To denigrate, ignore, or disrupt—racial inequality in health and the impact of a policy-induced breakdown of African American communities. Du Bois Review, 1, 247–279. doi:10.1017/S1742058X04042031.
- Grzywacz, J. G., Lang, W., Suerken, C., Bell, R. A., & Arcury, T. A. (2005). Age, race and ethnicity in the use of complementary and alternative medicine for health self-management. Journal of Aging and Health, 17, 547–572. doi:10.1177/0898264305279821. CrossRef
- Harrington, A. (1987). Medicine, mind, and the double brain: A study in nineteenth century thought. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
- Harrington, A. (2008). The cure within: A history of mind-body medicine. New York: W. W. Norton.
- Harris, J. I., Schoneman, S. W., & Carrera, S. R. (2005). Preferred prayer styles and anxiety control. Journal of Religion and Health, 44, 403–412. doi:10.1007/s10943-005-7179-6. CrossRef
- Jackson, J. S., & Knight, K. M. (2006). Race and self-regulatory health behaviors: The role of the stress response and the HPA axis in physical and mental health disparities. In K. W. Schair & L. L. Carstensen (Eds.), Social structures, aging, and self regulation in the elderly (pp. 189–214). New York: Springer.
- Koenig, H. G., McCullough, M. E., & Larson, D. B. (2001). Handbook of religion and health. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Krause, N. (2006). Exploring the stress-buffering effects of church-based and secular social support on self-rated health in late life. Journal of Gerontology, 61, S35–S43.
- Krause, N., & Chatters, L. M. (2005). Exploring race differences in a multidimensional battery of prayer measures among older adults. Sociology of Religion, 66, 23–43. doi:10.2307/4153114. CrossRef
- Ladd, K. L., & Spilka, B. (2006). Inward, outward, upward prayer: scale reliability and validation. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 42, 233–251. doi:10.1111/j.1468-5906.2006.00303.x. CrossRef
- MacLachlan, M. (2006). Culture and health: A critical perspective towards global health (2nd ed.). Chichester, England: Wiley.
- Mattis, J. S., & Jagers, R. J. (2001). A relational framework for the study of religiosity and spirituality in the lives of African Americans. Journal of Community Psychology, 29, 519–539. doi:10.1002/jcop.1034. CrossRef
- McCullough, M. E., & Laurenceau, J. (2005). Religiousness and the trajectory of self-rated health across adulthood. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 31, 560–573. doi:10.1177/0146167204271657. CrossRef
- Miller, W. R., & Thoresen, C. E. (2003). Spirituality, religion, and health: An emerging research field. The American Psychologist, 58, 24–35. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.58.1.24. CrossRef
- Nollen, N. L., Catley, D., Davies, G., Hall, M., & Ahluwalia, J. S. (2005). Religiosity, social support, and smoking cessation among urban African American smokers. Addictive Behaviors, 30, 1225–1229. doi:10.1016/j.addbeh.2004.10.004. CrossRef
- Pargament, K. I., & Ano, G. G. (2006). Spiritual resources and struggles in coping with medical illness. Southern Medical Journal, 99, 1161–1162.
- Pargament, K. I., Koenig, H. G., & Perez, L. M. (2000). The many methods of religious coping: Development and initial validation of the RCOPE. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 56, 519–543. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1097-4679(200004)56:4<519::AID-JCLP6>3.0.CO;2-1. CrossRef
- Poloma, M. M., & Gallup, G. (1991). Varieties of prayer: A survey report. Philadelphia: Trinity Press International.
- Research Triangle Institute. (2004). SUDAAN example manual, release 9.0. Research Triangle Park, NC: Research Triangle Institute.
- Roof, W. C. (1999). Spiritual marketplace: Baby boomers and the remaking of American religion. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
- Spilka, B. (2003). The psychology of religion: An empirical approach (3rd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.
- Taylor, R. J., Chatters, L. M., & Levin, J. (2004). Religion in the lives of African Americans: Social, psychological and health perspectives. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications Inc.
- Prayer and Spiritual Practices for Health Reasons among American Adults: The Role of Race and Ethnicity
Journal of Religion and Health
Volume 49, Issue 3 , pp 283-295
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer US
- Additional Links
- Complementary and alternative medicine
- Health status
- Author Affiliations
- 1. College of Medicine, Howard University, 1112 Nora Drive, Silver Spring, MD, 20904, USA
- 2. Center for Research on Ethnicity, Culture and Health, University of Michigan School of Public Health, 109 Observatory Street, SPH I, Room 3806, Ann Arbor, MI, 48109-2029, USA