Nutrition Knowledge and DietExploring the Influence of Social and Informational Factors in an Indian Adult Population

Christopher J. McKinley, Montclair State University
Yam Limbu, Montclair State University
Rajesh K. Gautam, Dr. Harisingh Gour University, Sagar
Ajay K. Ahirwar, Dr. Harisingh Gour University, Sagar
Pragya Dubey, Dr. Harisingh Gour University, Sagar
C Jayachandran, Montclair State University


Background: There has been little research conducted within developing nations examining the link between knowledge and diet-related perceptions and behaviors. In addition, prior investigations have rarely examined interrelationships between knowledge and other nutrition-related factors. Purpose: This study explored the relationship between nutrition knowledge, social/informational factors, and diet-related outcomes among Indian adults with multiple chronic conditions. Methods: A snowball sampling technique was employed to recruit individuals. Hierarchical regression analysis was employed to examine mediating and moderating relationships. Results: Results from a cross-sectional survey indicated that knowledge only predicted use among those reporting greater pressure/concern from close others. Furthermore, social support and social trust were found to moderate the relationship between knowledge and diet-related perceptions and behaviors. Discussion: Results suggest that social factors may play a critical role in moderating the impact of nutrition knowledge on diet-related perceptions and behaviors. Translation to Health Education Practice: Public Health Education interventions targeting developing nations should aim to maximize consumers’ nutrition knowledge while identifying valued close others who can help encourage positive health action. Furthermore, Health Educators as well as government and local communities must engage in outreach efforts to reinforce or, if necessary, change public perceptions regarding the food industry.