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Implementing and sustaining dietary change in the context of social relationships
Institutionen för kostvetenskap, Umeå universitet.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food, Nutrition and Dietetics.
2011 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, ISSN 0283-9318, E-ISSN 1471-6712, Vol. 25, no 3, 583-590 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background:  Changing to healthier dietary habits is quite difficult to implement and even more difficult to sustain. As the majority of people have some or all their meals with others, it is likely that their social relationships influence the dietary change process and its sustainability. Thus, the aim of this research was to explore and describe experiences of dietary change and its sustainability in the context of an individual’s social relationships.

Methods:  Semi-structured interviews were conducted individually with fourteen individuals who had previously been participants in a 3-month dietary intervention study using a Mediterranean diet. Thematic analysis was used on verbatim transcripts of the interviews.

Results:  Social relationships were the main barrier to sustainability – in particular social relationships within the household where various coping strategies were needed on an everyday basis. Social relationships outside the household were also difficult to manage as dietary change challenged existing traditions and norms of what to eat. The changer was thereby forced to risk social disapproval or to deviate from the diet.

Conclusions:  Social relationships within and outside the household complicated the accomplishment of healthy dietary changes. Hence, it is important to acknowledge the social context of the changer when dietary change is to be implemented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 25, no 3, 583-590 p.
Keyword [en]
dietary change, social relationship, sustainability, barriers, qualitative interviews.
National Category
Food Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-150570DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-6712.2010.00867.xISI: 000293756500022OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-150570DiVA: diva2:418735
Available from: 2011-05-24 Created: 2011-04-01 Last updated: 2015-07-31Bibliographically approved

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Mattsson Sydner, Ylva
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