© Borgis - New Medicine 1/2009, s. 13-18
Sylwia Merkiel, *Wojciech Chalcarz, Sylwia Chmielewska
FOOD BEHAVIOUR AND ATTITUDE TOWARDS NUTRITIONAL KNOWLEDGE IN PREMENOPAUSAL WOMEN
Food and Nutrition Department of the Eugeniusz Piasecki University School of Physical Education in Poznan
Head of the Department: Dr hab. Wojciech Chalcarz, prof. nadzw. AWF
Aim.The aim of this study was to assess food behaviour and attitude towards nutritional knowledge in premenopausal women.
Material and methods. Questionnaires on food behaviour and attitude towards nutritional knowledge were filled in by 60 women aged 44 to 50 years who lived in Dzierżoniów and worked as clerks in the Town Council and Internal Revenue. The questions concerned eating meals, food habits, frequency of eating selected foodstuffs, avoiding foodstuffs and dishes, as well as women´s opinions of their own diet and their attitude towards nutritional knowledge. Statistical analysis was carried out by means of the SPSS 12.0 PL for Windows computer program. The studied population was divided according to educational status.
Results. Educational status had a statistically significant influence on frequency of preparing meals on one´s own, frequency of consuming milk and dairy products, and on avoiding cereals and cereal products, poultry, eggs and alcohol.
Conclusions. Food habits of women with higher education were more favourable with respect to frequency of consuming milk and dairy products as well as avoiding eggs and alcohol in their diets, while food habits of women with secondary education were more desirable in terms of avoiding cereals and cereal products, and poultry. In most of the studied premenopausal women inadequate food habits were observed, including too long intervals between meals, too low frequency of eating wholemeal bread, vegetables, fruit, milk and dairy products, and fish, along with too high frequency of eating meat and poultry. A nutrition education programme for women of premenopausal age should be worked out and implemented.
Premenopause is the period in a woman´s life which precedes the last menorrhoea, characterised by decreasing concentration and irregular secretion of reproductive hormones . Changes in hormone concentrations in a woman´s body not only intensify the most troublesome in this period vasomotor symptoms but also bring about atrophic changes in oestrogen-dependent tissues and numerous metabolic disorders . These physiological changes increase the risk of diet-related diseases such as obesity, atherosclerosis, hypertension, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis [2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. Thus, premenopausal women should pay special attention to their own food behaviour in order to reduce the risk of the above-mentioned diseases.
The aim of this study was to assess food behaviour and attitude towards nutritional knowledge in premenopausal women.
MATERIAL AND METHODS
Questionnaires on food behaviour and attitude towards nutritional knowledge were filled in by all women aged 44 to 50 years who lived in Dzierżoniów, worked as clerks in the Town Council and Internal Revenue, and agreed to take part in the study. Thus, the studied population included 60 women whose mean age was 46.7±2.0 years. The questions concerned eating meals, food habits, frequency of eating selected foodstuffs, avoiding foodstuffs and dishes, as well as women´s opinions of their own diet and their attitude towards nutritional knowledge.
Statistical analysis was carried out by means of the SPSS 12.0 PL for Windows computer program. The studied population was divided according to educational status. Quantitative variables were first analysed using the Shapiro-Wilk statistic for testing normality. The level of significance was set at p=0.05. For all the analysed quantitative variables, means and standard deviations were calculated. The unpaired Student´s t test for normally distributed variables and the non-parametric Mann-Whitney U test for skewed variables were used to investigate statistically significant differences. Qualitative variables were presented in contingency tables. Statistical significance was determined using Pearson´s chi-square test. If for a certain variable the percentage of the population was lower than 20% for at least one subgroup and at least one answer, the Mann-Whitney U test was used. The level of significance was set at p=0.05.
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