SUBMIT MANUSCRIPT

Donnish Journal of Neuroscience and Behavioral Health

April 2015 Vol. 1(1), pp. 001-011

Copyright 2015 Donnish Journals




Original Research Article


Is Geophagia a Health-Seeking Behavior or an Ethnic Remedy towards Greater Personal Resilience?


1,2Ishmael D. Norman*, 5Fred N. Binka, 4Moses K. Aikins, 5Francis B. Zotor, 3Anthony N. Godi.

1Department of Health Policy Planning and Management, School of Public Health, (Hohoe Campus), University of Health and Allied Sciences, P. M. B. Ho, Volta Region, Ghana.
2The Institute for Security, Disaster and Emergency Studies, Sandpiper Place, NYD 54/55, Langma, CR, P. O. Box CT 4958, Cantonments, Accra, Ghana.
3Department of Biostatistics, School of Public Health, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana.
4Department of Health Policy Planning and Management, School of Public Health, University of Ghana, P. O. Box LG 13, Legon, Accra, Ghana.
5School of Public Health, University of Health and Allied Sciences, P. M. B. 31, Ho, Volta Region, Ghana.

Corresponding Author E-mail: ishmael_norman@yahoo.com

Accepted 26th March, 2015.



Abstract


Objective: We investigated if Geophagia was a health-seeking behavior or a socio-cultural remedy towards enhanced personal resilience. Method: We used a sample size of 2,000 with 90% power to detect an effect size of 30% at significance level of 5%. We randomly selected one or more district, municipality or metropolitan area from each of the 10 regions (Rosemary and Valadez, 2013). We randomly selected one or more communities from each of that and then use the random walk method to evaluate households within each community till the quota for the region was met (Milligan, et al., 2004). Regional comparisons were made possible due to the stratified and random selection of representations that were similar in characteristics such as being urban or rural, then ethnicity, religion and gender. We obtained Ethical Approval to conduct the assessment. Result: The result shows that Geophagia is a cultural nutritional reality which is practiced widely in Ghana. It also appears to be a health-seeking behavior that seems to enhance the resilience of the practitioners against certain health challenges. Discussion: The research on Geophagia needs to be reconsidered without any prejudicial biases to reflect the true cultural and health reasons for it. Conclusion: Geophagia is not a result of food insecurity or food scarcity. It is a nutritional habit which may require more than the presence of food to break it.

Keywords: Geophagia, Health-Seeking behavior, Socio-Cultural justification, Resilience, Mental Illness.

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Cite This Article:

Ishmael D. Norman*, Fred N. Binka, Moses K. Aikins, Francis B. Zotor, Anthony N. Godi. Is Geophagia a Health-Seeking Behavior or an Ethnic Remedy towards Greater Personal Resilience?. Donnish Journal of Neuroscience and Behavioural Health 1(1) 2015 pp. 001-011.


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