Influencing Nutritional Practices

What factors influencing nutritional practices in the United States could be changed to improve health?

 

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Factors affecting nutritional practices in the United states are diverse including biological factors which entails appetite, hunger and taste of food, economic factor such as the cost of food, income and availability of food. Likewise, physical factor which entails access to food, cooking skills, education and time also affect nutritional practices in US. Social factor is another factor that affect nutritional practices and it consist of the influence of culture, family, peers and meal patterns on the nutritional practices of people in the United States. Psychological factors such as mood, stress and guilt also affect the choice of food of people and hence affecting their nutritional practices. Another important factor is attitude, beliefs and knowledge about food which also significantly affect nutritional practices of people in the United States (Garza et al., 2019).

While little can be done about biological factors since human body is wired to respond to its physiological needs through hunger and satiety, Hughes and Power (2019) discovered that a lot of changes can be done to other factors in order to improve health. Considering economic factors, poor people always eat unbalanced diet because nutritious food are expensive and they cannot afford them. Therefore, they resort to eating cheap unhealthy junk food. Rich people on the other hand have a lot of food variety to choose from. Therefore, the poor people should resort to cheaper healthy foodstuff that can provide them with the necessary nutrients they need in their diets. Such food stuffs include broccoli which is rich in a variety of nutrients.

Considering physical factors, education is an invaluable aspect which affect nutritional practices of majority of population in the United States. Having the right information on how diet affect healthy living is substantial to people. However, currently there are a lot of sources of nutritional information which are conflicting leaving masses of people confused on which information to believe in (Garza et al., 2019). Therefore, there should be clear consistent messages on nutrition conveyed to the people of United States through relevant trusted sources such as through health professionals and through media.

Different social classes in the society have different nutritional habit. Hughes and Power (2019) found out that people of low social status have little on their plate therefore they suffer malnutrition while people of higher social classes have so much food to feast on so they suffer over nutrition which could lead to lifestyle disease such as obesity. Regardless of individual social status in the society, it should be understood that health is the real wealth and therefore each individual should focus on maintaining good health through eating healthy.

Consumer attitude towards their diet needs a lot of consideration in working towards improving health in the United States where most people value the taste of food more than its nutritional benefits (Garza et al., 2019). Health should be given first priority even in our choice of food. Nutrition is a key factor in achieving good health and should not be overlooked based on the taste of food. Therefore, people need to be sensitized on the importance of nutrition in their diet so that they may have a change of attitude towards some foodstuffs which may not be appealing in taste but are rich in nutrients.

References

Garza, C., Stover, P. J., Ohlhorst, S. D., Field, M. S., Steinbrook, R., Rowe, S., … & Campbell, E. (2019). Best practices in nutrition science to earn and keep the public’s trust. The American journal of clinical nutrition109(1), 225-243.

Hughes, S. O., & Power, T. G. (2019). Nutritional health. In APA handbook of contemporary family psychology: Applications and broad impact of family psychology, Vol. 2 (pp. 169-183). American Psychological Association.

 

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