Attitudes, beliefs, and challenges regarding healthy food choices of residents living in Texas Health Service Region 1

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2015-05
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Abstract

This study sought to determine attitudes, beliefs, and challenges regarding healthy food choices faced by adult citizens, ages 18-65, in rural and border counties in the state of Texas, and correlated the findings to ethnicity, age, and income levels. The Health Belief Model was integrated specifically the “perceived barrier” component into a 20-question survey, distributed to 535 adults through professionals in three sub-samples. Those sub-samples were from the Texas Department of State Health Services, Community Health Worker’s, and Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Agents. A variety of analyses were employed to explore the data including frequencies, exploratory factor analysis, one-way ANOVA between groups of ethnicity, age, and income, and independent samples t-test. The results of this study found that 30% of the respondents indicated time being their biggest challenge in healthy food choices, with cost at 13%, and taste/choice at 14%. There was no significant difference among age and income groups in attitudes, beliefs, and challenges regarding healthy food choices. In contrast, there was a significant difference among ethnic groups with Hispanic/Latinos reporting more challenges compared to Black/African Americans in reference to how much trouble it takes to fix different things for family members. The results of this study have implications for professionals at Texas Department of State Health Services, Community Health Workers/Instructors, Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Agents, and teachers as they promote healthier food choices. This study provides information and knowledge which can assist individuals involved in healthy eating promotion and nutrition education programs.

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Keywords
Healthy food choices, Challenges
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