A survey of the knowledge of chronic diseases of lifestyle among members of a university community in South Africa
Background: The increase in the prevalence of chronic disease among people of different colours, religion, age group and economic status has been documented. Having adequate knowledge of chronic disease is a major impetus towards behavioural changes that lead to prevention and management of chronic diseases.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional online survey that examined the knowledge of a University community on the risk factors and signs and symptoms of chronic diseases of lifestyle. Chronic disease of lifestyle assessment questionnaire was administered, online, on the Community. A list-based sampling frame survey was conducted via the emails.
Results: A total of 124 (50.2%) respondents were females and 132 (53.7%) of our respondents were within 21–30 years of age. About 13.1% of our respondents were single while 41.6% completed tertiary education. Also, 26.9% were employed and vast majority of them were from black (92.2%) racial affiliation. The majority of them knew that smoking (92.2%), obesity (87.3%), alcohol consumption (84.1%) and stress (88.2%) are the causes of chronic diseases of lifestyle. More than half (52.66%) of the participants had adequate knowledge of the chronic diseases of lifestyle while 21.63% had poor knowledge of chronic diseases of lifestyle.
Conclusion: The majority of the participants had good knowledge about the risk factors of chronic diseases of lifestyle but their overall knowledge was poor.
Keywords: stroke, hypertension, diabetes, knowledge, chronic diseases of lifestyle