Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Interdisciplinary Health Sciences


Maria Duarte-Gardea


Background: Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) pose a significant global health threat, with modifiable lifestyle risk behaviors (mLRBs) contributing substantially to their onset. This study examined traditional and emerging mLRBs and their distribution on cross-sectional health outcomes among Hispanic/Latino in-school adolescents living on the U.S.-Mexico border. Methods: This secondary data analysis used information from the cross-sectional 2019 El Paso YHBS obtained through online surveys. The secondary data analyzed the prevalence, clustering, and co-occurrence of mLRBs of 539 Hispanic/Latino high school students. Results were compared to mLRBs findings corresponding to Hispanic/Latino adolescents who participated in the national and state 2019 CDC YRBSS. An adolescent lifestyle risk index and the most common patterns were explored among the local sample of adolescents. Results: Local adolescents displayed engaging in traditional and emerging mLRBs, with differences found based on sex, grade, and body weight status stratification. Local 9th and 10th grade students slightly outperformed their national and state peers in 6 and 7 mLRBs, respectively. Only a small fraction (5.8%) met the 24-hour movement behaviors concept. Cluster analysis revealed five distinct groups with varying levels of at- risks behaviors based on their engagement with mLRBs. Most local Hispanic/Latino adolescents (97.6%) did not meet one or more of the CDC's mLRB guidelines, with the most prevalent combination (18.4%) being insufficient physical activity, unhealthy diet behaviors, increased screen time, and reduced sleep time. Conclusion: The study revealed a considerable engagement in both traditional and emerging mLRBs among local Hispanic/Latino adolescents. The relationship between mLRBs and indicators like depression symptoms and low school performance underscores the need for local targeted innovative interventions. With just ~2% not engaging in any mLRBs, the study highlights the urgency for culturally tailored multi-risk behavioral interventions and participatory initiatives to address these traditional and emerging mLRBs and mitigate future health risks in this population. Key Words: mLRBs, NCDs, Hispanic/Latino, Adolescents.




Recieved from ProQuest

File Size

179 p.

File Format


Rights Holder

Silvia Salinas Lopez