Year of Publication

2009

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Thesis

College

Agriculture

Department

Hospitality and Dietetic Administration

First Advisor

Dr. Kelly Webber

Abstract

The effect of weight gain on college students may lead to physical and emotional problems that could continue into adulthood. Identifying behavioral, demographic, and psychological factors that impact college student’s weight status could aid in developing programs to help reduce weight and prevent weight gain in overweight and obese college students. This study evaluated the dietary habits, physical activity, and psychosocial characteristics of college students entering a university-sponsored weight loss program. Results suggest that the majority of participants have experienced weight gain in the past year and none have experienced weight loss. The student’s diets tended to include less than the recommended amounts of fiber, calcium, vitamin A, fruits, and vegetables. Diets tended to include more than the recommended amounts of protein, carbohydrate, and sodium according to the USDA Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI) and the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Students living on campus were found to participate in significantly greater amounts of strenuous physical activity than students living off campus. Self-efficacy for food consumption and physical activity was not found to have a significant effect on calories consumed or calories burned. A significant correlation was not found to exist between BMI and depression in this sample of college students.

Included in

Nutrition Commons

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