Healthy eating habits among Korean Americans
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The primary aim of the study was to examine the predictive relationships among personal factors (age, gender, education, income, BMI, and acculturation), barriers to healthy eating, healthy eating self-efficacy, environmental factors, and healthy eating habits among Korean Americans (KAs). The conceptual framework was adopted from Pender’s Health Promotion Model. Bivariate correlations among the study variables and hierarchical multiple regression tests were performed to determine the predictive relationships among the variables. Mediating and moderating effects were explored, as were generational differences in barriers, self-efficacy, and healthy eating habits. The study was designed as a retrospective, cross-sectional, correlational study. A nonprobability sample of 137 KAs was recruited from KA communities by the surveys in Texas, California, Georgia, Maryland, and other states. Although none of the personal factors were significantly related to healthy eating habits, some of the strength and direction of the relationships between personal factors and healthy eating habits were changed when behavior-specific cognitions and environmental factors moderated those relationships . The main finding of the study was that self-efficacy was the strongest predictor for healthy eating habits. Additional data obtained from this study was the discrepancy between confidence in reducing sodium intake and the actual sodium intake. Considering that high sodium intake is a problematic concern for Koreans and KAs, as well as for the general American population, further research is needed to identify the factors related to this concern and to improve this health issue. Also, further studies related to eating habits among KAs with a wide range of generational levels and geographic areas are necessary to gain a deeper understanding of their health and to promote healthy eating habits.