Perception of Dietary Change and Attitudes Towards the Irish Diet Amond Non-Nationals in Ireland.

Qianling Zhou, Dublin Institute of Technology
Phensiri Asawasirisap, Dublin Institute of Technology
John Kearney, Dublin Institute of Technology

Zhou Q, Asawasirisap P & Kearney JM (2009) Perception of dietary change and attitudes towards the Irish diet among non-nationals in Ireland. Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism 55 (suppl 1), 258.


Rationale & Objectives: Cross-cultural attitudes to diet differ significantly. This study examined attitudes towards the Irish diet and their perceived dietary change among a random sample of non-nationals living in Ireland.

Materials & Methods: A self-administered cross-sectional survey was distributed to a randomly selected sample of English language students in Dublin.

Results & Findings: 473 students from four geographical regions (Asia, Africa, South & Central American, and Europe) (response rate: 84%) completed the survey. Marked cultural differences between geographical regions were found with South & Central Americans being the most likely to indicate a decrease in fruit and vegetable intakes (31%) since living in Ireland while Asians (10.2%) was the least likely subgroup to pay attention to their intake of fruit and vegetables. Africans (26%) were more likely to consider no difference in terms of health between their diet in Ireland and Africa while Europeans (74%) were the most likely to perceive that their diets were now less healthy in Ireland.

Conclusion: Cultural perspectives of what constitutes a healthy diet differ significantly between geographical regions.