Religion and health: the application of a cognitive-behavioural framework

John Maltby, Christopher Alan Lewis, Anna Freeman, Liza Day, Sharon Mary Cruise, Michael J. Breslin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


The empirical examination of the relationship between religion and health has often lacked theoretical direction. The aim of the study was to examine the relationship between dimensions of religiosity and health within the context of James and Wells' cognitive-behavioural framework of religion. A community sample of 177 UK adults completed measures of religious orientation, religious coping, and prayer activity alongside the SF-36 Health Survey. Consistent with the cognitive-behavioural framework of religion, intrinsic religiosity and meditative prayer scores accounted for unique variance in both physical and mental health scores over a number of religious measures. These findings suggest the potential usefulness and importance of a cognitive-behavioural framework to understand the relationship between religion (as measured by meditative prayer and intrinsic religiosity) and health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)749-759
Number of pages11
JournalMental Health, Religion and Culture
Issue number7-8
Publication statusPublished - 3 Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Behavioural
  • Cognitive
  • Mental health
  • Physical health
  • Prayer
  • Religion


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