Submitted By Michelle-Gruenewald
Words: 1191
Pages: 5

Cultural Comparisons: A Brief Look into Three Different Ethnicities
Michelle L Gruenewald
Grand Canyon University
NRS-429V Family Centered Health Promotion
March 5, 2015

Comparing Cultures: A Brief Look into Three Different Ethnicities In her song, The Best Day, Taylor Swift (2007) sings, “If you are lucky enough to be different, don’t ever change...” Being unique is an excellent quality found only in a few, and is one of the greatest characteristics one can have. However, most people have something that ties them to a particular group or culture that they identify with, and in that respect, there will be some similarities. The population of the United States is growing more diverse every day. The U.S. Census Bureau had to add more choices for ethnicity to the 2010 census ballots (U.S. Census, n.d.), which poses a challenge for nurses in offering individualized care. A Heritage Assessment tool is available to gain some insight as to the patient’s current beliefs and values pertaining to their culture, and can be a useful tool when nurses are planning health promotion or prevention activities and health maintenance or restoration teaching. The United States is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world, containing the beliefs, values, and lifestyles of Latino families, Filipino families, along with countless other races and ethnic backgrounds. By taking a glance into the beliefs of a Latino family, a Filipino family, and an American family with a Polish background, one can find vast differences in both the lifestyles and culture, yet they do have similarities as well and can all be found in one country, living together in harmony. The Latino culture is a very family-oriented, collectivist culture, even in the United States. Latinos enjoy spending time with their families; it is not unusual for multiple generations to live in one household together. They are very religious, and 99% of Latinos are Catholic. For Latinos, God, family, and traditions or culture are most important. Typically, Latinos go to mass weekly or sometimes more often, see family and extended family daily, and of course celebrate. Latino families love to sing, dance, and eat, which is often what they do when they get together. With all of the love they exude in their family, it is hard to trust outsiders, especially when the outsiders do not understand the traditions. Many seek medical attention from traditional or folk healers, who heal with tea, herbs, and prayer. These folk healers follow the Hippocrates theory of balance, believing that for all symptoms of malaise, there is an unbalance in one or more of the body’s fluids, most of the time relating to hot and cold balance (U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d.). Many other Latino-Americans will search the internet, social media or seek out help from friends. Therefore, many Latinos, when they are in the U.S. will not pursue professional medical assistance until it is almost too late; for fear of ridicule, language barriers, and prejudices. Similarly, Filipinos are a close knit, family-oriented, collectivist society; however, unlike Latinos, Filipinos are primarily matriarchal society, the women are equals and highly regarded. They too like to spend time relaxing, eating, singing, and dancing. Like Latinos, the Filipinos subscribe to the theory of balance. However, Filipinos, according to Dr. Gay Becker (2003), are extraordinarily in tuned with their body, the theory of balance or “timbang” helps them to be very aware of their environment and their body functions, which in turn, helps them to self-manage their chronic diseases. While living in the Philippines they were familiar with the American culture and spoke English because of the relationship the United States had with the Philippines. Many did not have access to health care while in their native land but were given that opportunity when coming to the United States; they did however take advantage of it and see