Acta Scientific Nutritional Health (ASNH)(ISSN: 2582-1423)

Research Article Volume 4 Issue 4

Factors Influencing College Food Choices: Findings from a Survey of Honors College Students

Maidah Atta1, Austin Rice2 and Hsiao Lai3*

1Honors College, East Carolina University, USA
2Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, USA
3Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Department of Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, USA

*Corresponding Author: Hsiao Lai, Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Department of Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, USA.

Received: February 25, 2020; Published: March 04, 2020

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Objective: We examined a cohort of Honors College students to determine factors driving fast food intake and leading to other unhealthy food choices.

Design: An observational cohort study was conducted using an 18-question survey administered to Honors students via Qualtrics survey platform from April to June 2013. Students were queried on frequency of fast food intake, intake of sweetened beverages, and snack consumption in addition to college-focused risk factors of exercise frequency, stress levels, and course load. Nutritional knowledge was assessed by asking students to identify American Dietetic Association (ADA) recommended daily caloric intake (RDI). Respondents were stratified by frequency of fast food intake into 2 groups: Frequent fast food consumers (FFF) ≥3x per week and Infrequent fast food consumers (IFF): <3x per week.

  Data analysis was conducted using Fisher’s Exact test or Chi-Squared analysis for categorical variables and Poisson Regression on count variables.

Participants: All students enrolled in the Honors College at a single higher educational institution in Eastern North Carolina in 2013 were invited to participate. 92 Honors Students responded, 22.8% male and 77.2% female.

Results: FFF consumed greater amounts of sweetened beverages (P = 0.01), had higher stress levels (P = 0.04), and higher perceived caloric needs (P = 0.03). Perceived caloric need was also associated with more frequent snacking (P = 0.01). No other significant associations were identified.

Conclusion: Despite their privileged educational status Honors students demonstrated a high frequency of unhealthy food behaviors similar to that reported in non-honors undergraduates. Overestimation of recommended caloric intake was associated with increased snacking behavior and students with higher fast food consumption also consumed sweetened beverages at a higher frequency. Despite their privileged educational status Honors students demonstrated a high frequency of unhealthy food behaviors similar to that reported in non-honors undergraduates. Overestimation of recommended caloric intake was associated with increased snacking behavior and students with higher fast food consumption also consumed sweetened beverages at a higher frequency.

Keywords: Food Choices; Eating Behavior; Obesity

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Citation

Citation: Hsiao Lai., et al. “Factors Influencing College Food Choices: Findings from a Survey of Honors College Students". Acta Scientific Nutritional Health 4.4 (2020): 07-12.




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