H. Chicoine, K. Hoxie, J. Magana, T. Barron, A. Vahk, K. Taylor

Eastern Washington University, Cheney, WA

Nutrition is an important aspect in contributing to overall health; however, many individuals have a limited knowledge and/or are misinformed about nutrition. These factors may negatively influence one’s nutrition quality and therefore increase possible health risks. PURPOSE: To examine the general nutrition knowledge between two health majors and two non-health majors in undergraduate students and determine any factors leading to significant differences. METHODS: Researchers distributed the General Nutrition Knowledge Questionnaire obtained from the University College London website and a consent form in health major (Exercise Science and Public Health) courses and non-health major (Marketing and English) courses. Seventy-seven participants completed these four section, 20-minute questionnaires. Additionally, demographic information such as sex, age, weight, height, year in school, and major were collected. Data was analyzed using independent samples t-test with an alpha level set at 0.05. RESULTS: A significant difference was found between health and non-health majors in section 2 (food groups and their nutrients; health; 70.4± 10.9%, non-health; 64.2±10.4%; p=0.013) and section 4 (health problems or diseases related to diet and weight management; health; 72.2±12.8%, non-health;64.1± 14.2%; p=0.011). Health majors scored higher than non-health majors on these two questionnaire sections, but were very similar within the other two sections. Although, females scored higher than males in all four questionnaire sections, this difference was not significant. Additionally, no significant difference was found in body mass index (BMI) between the majors, overall average BMI fell into the overweight category (25.4±5.4 kg/m2) when looking at both majors. CONCLUSIONS: Undergraduate health majors scored significantly higher than non-health majors in questionnaire sections, yet no difference was found in BMI. Therefore, our findings may suggest that although health majors may have a greater understanding about nutrition, the application of this knowledge may be lacking. Study limitations include a larger ratio of females (n=53) to males (n=24), and a large difference in the number of participants representing each year in school.

This document is currently not available here.