Nutriton: Behaviours and perceptions of leisure centre employees; a cross-sectional survey
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Background: Public leisure centres can be effective settings for health promotion. Previous studies have explored different aspects of people’s perceptions with regards to leisure centres, including the appropriateness of the food provision and environment. The present study explores association between health and nutrition perception and behaviour of employees within health promoting settings. Method: A cross-sectional survey of 25 leisure centre employees, aged 18-50+, working within a range of public leisure centres in the same local authority. Results: There was a large, positive correlation between fruit and vegetable intake and perceived diet quality: Participants with a higher perceived diet quality score had an associated higher fruit and vegetable intake (r=0.700), which was statistically significant (p=<0.001). Additionally, the majority of participants (52%) reported using sports nutrition supplements and 44% agreed or strongly agreed that offering sports nutrition supplements to service users in the leisure centre is useful which was statistically significant (p=0.019). There was no correlation between physical activity levels and fruit and vegetable intake. Similarly, there was no correlation between perceived diet quality and opinion on whether leisure centre food and drink provisions should only offer healthy options. Conclusion: Fruit and vegetable intake is strongly associated with perception of diet quality, with those who have a higher intake reporting a higher, overall quality of diet. A number of potential misconceptions with regards to the use of sports nutrition supplements and healthy food and drink choices were also identified. Therefore there is opportunity for further consideration with regards to nutritional education and health promotion within this setting.
BSc (Hons) Human Nutrition and Dietetics
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