Perceptions of a Plant-Based Diet of the General Public
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Background An increased media attention to a plant-based diet and more research undertaken is leading to an increased awareness of consumer’s dietary behaviour however, there is a lack of research conducted in the UK. Methods An electronic questionnaire based on a cross-sectional survey design was completed by members of the general public. Results One hundred and five participants completed the survey. The majority of participants consumed meat (71%) and fish (73%). Mann- Whitney statistical analysis test showed a statistically significant difference between whether a participant consumed meat and their food frequency score of fruit and vegetables (p=0.004), with those not consuming meat obtaining a greater fruit and vegetable frequency score. The majority of men (68.7%) agreed that the strongest perceived benefit was ‘I will have less body fat’ whereas ‘My digestion will be improved’ was the strongest benefit for women. One way Anova showed a statistically significant difference between the degree of agreement with the statements and the degree to whether they would be willing to follow a plant-based diet (df=92, p=<0.0001). There was no gender difference for the strongest barrier of ‘plant-based meals or snacks would be difficult to find when eating out’. Conclusions This study has highlighted that further research is required to develop a further understanding of consumer barriers of adhering to a plant-based diet. Furthermore, an awareness of plant-based foods is needed along with an understanding of how they fit within the recommended UK diet of the Eatwell guide.
BSc (Hons) Public Health Nutrition
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