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Open Access Knowledge Gaps of the Health Benefits of Beans among Low-Income Women

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This article is Open Access under the terms of the Creative Commons CC BY licence.

Objectives: We determined knowledge of the health benefits of consuming beans, and assessed if awareness varied by acculturation status among Hispanic and non-Hispanic low-income women. Methods: We used a self-administered survey with Iowa women aged 18-65 years who were eligible to receive income-based services through 2 healthcare clinics, a WIC clinic, and Extension Outreach. Chi-square and ANOVA were used to compare bean health benefit knowledge, demographics, health-risk factors, nutrition information seeking, and self-efficacy by acculturation categories. Results: Of the 158 women who completed the survey, 58% were Hispanic, with a mean age of 36 years. In terms of acculturation, 24% were Hispanic-dominant, 30% bicultural, and 46% English dominant. Over 50% of all respondents did not know bean consumption lowered cholesterol, aided blood glucose control, or reduced some cancer risks. Responses for 5 of 7 knowledge statements differed significantly by acculturation. Hispanic-dominant and bicultural women reported significantly better health, higher bean consumption, and less cigarette smoking than English-dominant women. Bicultural and English-dominant women were more likely to use the Internet for nutrition information. Conclusions: There are knowledge gaps about the health benefits of bean consumption among low-income women. Nutrition education to improve their knowledge may lead to increased bean consumption, reducing health disparities and improving nutrition.
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Keywords: ACCULTURATION; CHRONIC DISEASE; HEALTH DISPARITIES; HEALTH INFORMATION; HISPANICS; LEGUMES; NUTRITION EDUCATION

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Food Science & Human Nutrition, Iowa State University, Ames, IA, USA 2: Human Sciences Extension and Outreach, Iowa State University Cooperative Extension, Ames, IA, USA

Publication date: 01 January 2018

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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