Health students’ knowledge about healthy eating and factors associated with the university environment

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.17843/rpmesp.2022.394.11349

Keywords:

Healthy Diet, Universities, Health Promotion

Abstract

Objective. To assess the healthy eating (HE) knowledge of health students and the factors associated with the university environment. Materials and methods. This was a cross-sectional study of 512 university students (≥ 18 years) enrolled in nine undergraduate health careers. It was conducted from April to November 2017. The Instrument for Assessment of Health Promotion in Universities and the International Physical Activity Questionnaire were used. In addition, we measured weight, height and waist circumference. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were  carried out with SPSS version 23.0. Results. We found that most university students from the nine health careers had insufficient knowledge about healthy eating (71.9%; n=368). However, the highest proportion of students with sufficient knowledge was found in the carrer of nutrition (15.3%; n=22), followed by those in the physical education career (12.5%; n=18). The lowest percentage of students with sufficient knowledge was found in the career of medicine (8.3%; n=12). Multivariate analysis showed that sufficient knowledge about healthy eating was related to articipation in healthy eating activities (p=0.012; PR=1.94), participation in activities addressing self-esteem and self-knowledge (p=0.046; PR=0.59) and being overweight (p=0.036; PR=1.53). Conclusion. A low percentage of health students had sufficient knowledge about healthy eating. However,
participation in healthy eating, self-esteem and self-knowledge activities at the university managed to improve the level of knowledge. We recommend the development of university projects that include the psychological, food and body triad, thus involving all health careers, with the aim of improving the health and quality of life of university students.

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Author Biography

  • Ilana Nogueira Bezerra, Programa de Posgrado en Salud Colectiva, Universidad Estatal de Ceará (UECE), Fortaleza, Ceará, Brasil

    Nutricionista, Maestría en Salud Pública por el Instituto de Medicina Social de la Universidad del Estado de Río de Janeiro. Doctorado en Ciencias por el Programa de Posgrado en Fisiopatología Clínica y Experimental de la Universidad del Estado de Río de Janeiro. Enlace: Centro de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Estatal de Ceará (UECE). Correo electrónico: ilana.bezerra@yahoo.com.br. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2072-0123.

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Published

2022-12-29

Issue

Section

Original Article

How to Cite

1.
Sousa IC, Catrib AMF, Medeiros NT, Pereira da Silva Godinho CC, Carioca A-AF, Marinho Holanda GP, et al. Health students’ knowledge about healthy eating and factors associated with the university environment. Rev Peru Med Exp Salud Publica [Internet]. 2022 Dec. 29 [cited 2024 May 30];39(4):425-33. Available from: https://rpmesp.ins.gob.pe/index.php/rpmesp/article/view/11349

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