Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Is calorie estimation of foods associated with body mass index?
by Demko, Robert W., M.S.N., Bastyr University, 2016, 86; 10126855
Abstract (Summary)

Both a lack of knowledge in estimating calorie content of foods and the estimation of energy needs are possible factors associated with the high prevalence of obesity in the United States. This study investigates the association between the knowledge of calories of foods, energy requirements, and the body mass index (BMI). Currently, it is unknown if accuracy in estimating calorie content of foods is associated with energy balance and weight management.

This study examined calorie estimation knowledge (CEK) of foods and nutrition-related knowledge and experience through an online survey of U.S. adults. The survey assessed CEK though a novel online questionnaire, the Calorie Estimation Quiz (CEQ), and collected participants’ demographic information, anthropometric measurements, self-reported BMI status and energy needs. Scores for the CEQ were associated with characteristics and additional factors collected within the survey.

Results of the investigation indicate that CEK was not associated with BMI classification within the overall sample. Some significant associations between CEK and specific characteristics of the sample were observed suggesting these specific factors are positively associated with CEK as mechanisms of nutrition education. Those significant factors include BMI accuracy, health and nutrition education, frequency of nutrition label reading and the use of ‘apps’ for tracking calories. Additional factors demonstrated differences in CEK, but not to the level of statistical significance for this investigation.

Since CEK was not significantly associated with BMI status or dieting history, CEK may not be directly associated with the ability to manage weight. Results suggest that the significant factors associated with CEK can be utilized to increase the ability to estimate the calories in food items. What was not determined with this investigation is any possible association of CEK with food intake levels that could directly influence weight management and BMI status.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Kazaks, Alexandra
Commitee: Bartok, Cynthia, Boutin, Debra, Harris, Cristen
School: Bastyr University
Department: Nutrition
School Location: United States -- Washington
Source: MAI 55/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Health sciences, Nutrition, Health education
Keywords: Accuracy, Body mass index, Calories, Energy needs, Estimation, Knowledge
Publication Number: 10126855
ISBN: 978-1-339-84893-8
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