Date of Conferral
Dr. Kimberly Dixon-Lawson
The availability of nutrition information is an important aspect of health care and equally important is access to cultural and theoretical nutrition evidence to increase awareness on ways to manage a diet in ethnic communities. The problem was the shortage of culturally appropriate nutrition data to educate Caribbean immigrants. The purpose of the study was to acquire culturally profound nutrition information on Caribbean immigrants' distinctive philosophical perception on nutrition and food choices. A phenomenological approach was used to examine ways in which the participants integrate nutrition facts when making food choices. The theory of reasoned action was the main conceptual framework used in this study to assess the participants' dietary belief systems. A purposeful sampling approach was used to recruit participants for the study and the participants were prescreened as part of the data collection procedure. The inclusion criteria focused on adult Caribbean immigrants who had awareness on nutrition habits. The 15 participants who agreed to participate in face-to-face interviews provided data on their food habits. The interpretive phenomenological analysis approach was used to investigate and explain the participants' diet. The participants' routines included eating whole foods from plant and animal products, eating foods from all food groups in moderation, and monitoring salt and sugar intake to prevent diet-related illness. The frequently occurring themes that emerged from the study included family traditions and ethnic beliefs and values that inspired recipes and types of food the participants consume. These findings may possibly be used by health professionals to assist in planning or implementing culturally sensitive education programs to enhance nutrition awareness in Caribbean immigrant communities.