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Browsing by study line "Food-related behavior"

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  • Oksanen, Marja (2022)
    Alcohol policy, alcohol legislation and alcohol consumption have a long history in Finland. For long, Finnish people have been seen as binge drinkers and harms caused by alcohol have been a true problem and burden for the public health. Still, alcohol is present in our everyday life. Therefore, there needs to be different ways to limit the consumption and related harms. This is where alcohol policy comes into action; its long history and the quite restrictive methods used in Finland have been generated for the welfare of the Finnish people and public health. Alcohol policy entails many aspects to consider. Discussing alcohol policy without taking into account such factors as self-regulation, alcohol culture and consumer practices leaves the discussion unilateral. The aim of this thesis is to identify what kind of policy measures were targeted when discussing the alcohol Act 2018 in the plenary session before voting about the Act. Also, the aim is to identify whether there was prejudice or stigma present in the discussion and how was alcohol culture taken into consideration when discussing the new act. In this study the focus is on alcohol culture and politics and therefore the research design of this study is qualitative. The material used in this research is a transcript of a plenary session held the day before the new Act was voted on. The method of analysis used to analyse the research material is directed content analysis. Still, it should be recognized, that this research is strongly related to rhetoric analyses as well. The debate in the plenary session was intense and strongly emphasized by personal opinions and arguments. The discussion many times shifted away from health policy to industrial policy which leaves open a question about the justification of alcohol policy in general. Stigma was present in the discussion and alcohol culture was referred to in a negative and positive sense. The nine target areas of alcohol policy were addressed, pricing and availability being emphasized more than other. The topic in general is part of a wider societal discussion and should be addressed from a wider perspective than alcohol policy alone.
  • Prinkey, Tyler (2024)
    Aims: There is no information on changes in body mass index (BMI) due to the COVID-19 pandemic among persons of migrant origin. The aim of the present study was to examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on BMI and factors associated with changes in BMI among the general- and migrant-origin populations in Finland. Methods: Individual-level changes in self-reported BMI among migrant origin persons (n=3313) were obtained from the FinMonik Survey conducted in 2018 and MigCOVID Survey conducted 2020-2021. Data for the general population reference group was obtained from the FinHealth 2017 Study conducted 2017-2018 and the FinHealth 2017 follow-up Study (n= 2982). Logistic regression was applied to examine the association between changes in BMI and age, sex, education, economic activity, length of residence in Finland, language skills, smoking, alcohol usage, sleep, physical activity, snacking, and fruit and vegetable consumption. A significant change in BMI was defined as a 5% or greater change. Results: 40.8 percent of the migrant-origin population and 41.2 percent of the general population in Finland experienced at least a five percent change in BMI. Persons of migrant origin who were other than students or employed (OR=1.71, 95% CI 1.18, 2.48) faced an increased risk for an increase in BMI of at least 5%, while being between 35-49 (OR=0.69, 95% CI 0.49, 0.98) and between 50-66 (OR=0.55, 95% CI 0.36, 0.83) had a significantly decreased risk. In the general population, an increase in BMI of at least 5% was more likely to occur among women (OR=1.61, 95% CI 1.26, 2.07), those who were other than students or employed (OR=1.68, 95% CI 1.26, 2.25), those who increased their alcohol intake (OR=1.64, 95% CI 1.06, 2.54), those who increased their snacking (OR=1.40, 95% CI 1.04, 1.90) and decreased their fruit and vegetable intake (OR=1.85 , 95% CI 1.18, 2.90). An increase of at least 5% in BMI was inversely related with being between the ages of 50 and 66 (OR=0.39, 95% CI 0.27, 0.57), having secondary education or higher (OR=0.61, 95% CI 0.43, 0.86), and even among those who smoked more during the pandemic (OR=0.50, 95% CI 0.26, 0.96). Conclusions: Although economic activity was determined to be a significant predictor of increases in BMI among both general- and migrant-origin populations, most examined factors applied differently to each population. These differences must be considered when planning future public health promotion efforts, particularly those during crisis situations.
  • Hermas, Melina (2023)
    Research shows that Finnish people could increase the consumption of some domestic fish species. Increased consumption has been calculated to have economic, social, and environmental benefits. The current situation of fish consumption is unsustainable. Academic literature on consumption and food systems emphasizes the importance of a holistic view to sustainability. Environmental sustainability has been emphasized and other dimensions of sustainability have been neglected, regarding policies and regulations of the fish industry. In this study, it is argued that observing the consumer perceptions of sustainability dimensions could help to develop a more sustainable fish industry and consumption patterns. The theoretical framework was formed based on literature review. A three-dimensional view to sustainability was used including social, economic, and environmental dimensions. The relevant factors to measure the importance of the dimensions were formed with previous studies on fish consumption. The research aims to reveal perceptions to sustainability dimensions importance from a consumer interface. The research questions are: Which dimensions of sustainability have importance to consumers regarding fish consumption? Are any of the dimensions and factors involved more important than the others? Are there differences between groups on the perception of the dimensions? The research was carried out as a quantitative online survey and shared on social media platforms. Data (N=107) was analysed with quantitative methods (descriptive statistics, crosstabulation and Kruskal-Wallis’s test). Most participants considered all sustainability dimensions important. Environmental dimension was the most important, and especially the factors of protecting the ecosystems, fish stocks and waterbodies. Between age groups a statistically significant difference was found in the importance of the environmental dimension. The results indicate that Finnish people are willing to consume more domestic fish, and care about the sustainability of fish consumption. This study contributes to the discussion of sustainable fish consumption and provides a new approach on developing more sustainable food systems.
  • Kemppinen, Pilvi Katriina (2023)
    Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing, is a common condition in the elderly population that can lead to malnutrition and other health complications. Texture-modified food (TMF) has traditionally been used to address this issue, but they often lack the visual appeal and variety of regular food, which can impact the quality of life of individuals with dysphagia. 3D food printing technology offers a promising solution by allowing for the creation of customised and visually appealing food with modified textures, shapes, flavours and nutrient contents. In addition, fruit and vegetable (F&V) intake of individuals in residential aged care facilities (RACF) is considerably low, hence innovative solutions such as 3D food printing technology has potential to address some of these challenges and improve the provision of nutrient-dense foods in aged care settings. This report investigates the provision and consumption of F&V-based TM and 3D printed foods in RACF. The report explores 1) TMF provision and consumption in Australian RACF by a quantitative data analysis of food consumption data, 2) barriers and enablers in the current TMF provision and consumption while exploring the potential of 3D food printing to be an answer for better nutrition among residents, 3) the sensory acceptance of 3D printed food among RACF staff members and 4) modelling the use of 3D printed food in a current TM menu. The results of the study suggest that F&V consumption of RACF residents is below recommendations, although the intake is still considered adequate on average. The provision and consumption of F&V-based food were spread throughout the day, although there was great between-meal variation. The average total provision of vegetables, fruit and juice were 4.1, 0.7 and 1.2 respectively, whereas consumed amounts were lower: 3.6, 0.6 and 1.1 respectively. Interviewees disclosed 3D printed food to be acceptable, albeit there are multiple barriers for its implementation. 3D printed food has the potential to provide benefits for residents on a TM diet in RACF but was not considered timely or practical for the moment. In particular, 3D printed food was considered to be a promising technology to address the emerging challenges that aged care sector will face in the next decades, however, the technology and its implementation still require development and planning. Menu modelling demonstrated how easily F&V intake can be altered, yet its impact on the intake of nutrients need to be further researched. The study highlights that further research and development are needed to improve technical feasibility and practicality of 3D food printing in aged care settings. Overall, while F&V-based 3D printed food has potential benefits, there are significant challenges that need to be addressed before this technology can be widely adopted in RACF, and for it to be beneficial for the nutritional intake and quality of life of the residents.
  • Maijala, Laura (2024)
    In nutrition science, food and nutrition are generally seen primarily as health promotion and disease prevention tools. One of the critical health promotion activities has been weight loss. However, the desired health goals are rarely achieved, even though health information is abundant, and dieting is widespread. My study aimed to find out how people struggling with weight management and challenges in their food relationship describe their food relationship, the factors that influence it, and how they see learning to eat intuitively, i.e. by listening to their bodies, as part of their food relationship. I aimed to increase the understanding of the different factors associated with eating and dieting and to consider whether there might be alternatives to traditional weight loss methods focusing on overall well-being and strengthening body connection rather than simply tracking weight. The research material was collected through semi-structured thematic interviews. The interviewees (=9) were selected from the participants of the "Farewell to yo-yoing" online course using intuitive eating methods. The interviews were organized using Teams’ video conference app between April and August 2022. The interview material was transcribed and analyzed using theory-based content analysis. The theory and analysis of the study were based on the food relationship framework of Talvia and Anglé (2018) and its five different aspects: behaviour, thoughts, feelings, senses and values. Body image challenges, often stemming from childhood and adolescence, were perceived as the main factors influencing the food relationship. Comments about body image and eating, as well as social comparison, were crucial factors that contributed to developing a perceived problematic food relationship. For some, eating had also become a way of regulating emotions. On the other hand, childhood was also associated with positive experiences, such as eating together and regular eating rhythms, which helped to connect with bodily sensations. Different food-related rules and diets emerged as common factors that undermined the ability to eat according to the body’s signals and were also associated with guilt about eating and binge eating. Similarly, training in intuitive eating was described to increase well-being, psychological flexibility, and decreased black-and-white thinking. In contrast, trust in the body's messages had become more central. However, learning to eat according to the body’s signals and challenging previous beliefs was still a work in progress for many. My thesis brought together the concepts of food relationship and intuitive eating in a new way. It helped highlight experiences rarely seen in the health promotion debate. The results suggest that the factors perceived to have negatively impacted the food relationship were the same factors that undermined the ability to eat based on the body’s signals. Therefore, supporting a positive relationship with food appears to be a key factor for intuitive eating. Future work should explore whether intuitive eating methods could be one way of promoting public health more widely, using standardized measures such as the IES-2 questionnaire. More research is also needed on using of the food relationship framework to promote health and support a positive relationship with food.
  • Immonen, Henna (2024)
    Background and objectives: To improve human health and environmental sustainability, change in the dietary protein consumption from red meat to plant-based protein sources is needed. Current consumption of legumes and plant-based meat alternatives (PBMA) are relatively low in Finland. However, there is a growing positive belief about plant-based protein sources among consumers, indicating an increasing interest in trying and integrating them into diets. To advance the development of new plant-based protein sources and to develop more effective and better tailored interventions to improve the consumption, beliefs about plant-based protein sources should be further studied. Thus, the aim of this thesis was to deepen the understanding of the relationship between different beliefs and consumption of legumes and PBMAs across sociodemographic groups. In addition, this thesis investigated whether sociodemographic factors moderate the associations between beliefs and consumptions. Materials and methods: Eight beliefs about plant-based protein sources as well as consumption of legumes and PBMAs were studied among Finnish adults (N=1000) who participated in the consumer survey conducted in 2020 as a part of the Leg4Life research project. Data was analysed with quantitative methods (descriptive statistics, Spearman’s correlation, Kruskal-Wallis’s test, and logistic regression). Results: Older age was associated with more frequent legume consumption, but also with less frequent PBMA consumption. No gender differences in the consumptions were found. Higher education and better perceived financial status were associated with more frequent legume and PBMA consumption. Sociodemographic differences were also found within the beliefs about plant-based protein sources. Younger participants perceived them as more sustainable and evoking more positive images compared to the middle-aged participants. Women had in general more positive beliefs than men. Beliefs ‘tasty’ and ‘fulfilling’ were associated with more frequent legume consumption, while beliefs ‘sustainable’ and ‘evokes positive images’ to more frequent PBMA consumption. Significant interaction effects were found between certain belief variables and sociodemographic factors on the consumption of both legumes and PBMAs. Conclusion: The findings from this study revealed a notable gap between beliefs and actual consumption and demonstrate the complexity between sociodemographic factors, beliefs, and consumption patterns regarding legumes and PBMAs. Even though there are positive beliefs about plant-based protein sources, both legumes and PBMAs are still consumed relatively infrequently, indicating that these alternatives have not yet become fully integrated into dietary habits.
  • Suonpää, Marianna (2023)
    Background: Adults’ obesity prevalence has become threefold world widely during the last 50 years, and the rate is estimated to continue to increase in the future. Overweight and obesity are a health challenge, as they create health problems to persons and load the health care. Both obesity prevention and treatment are a constituent of health care. Updated Obesity Current Care Guideline (2020) has been created to support the work of health professionals. It has not been previously studied nationally, how the obesity guideline is known, and how the prevention and treatment are handled in different health care sectors, areas, and occupational groups in Finland. Aims: This thesis aimed to find out, who of the health professionals had familiarized with the updated obesity guideline and how they perceive it has affected their work. Additionally, the prevention and treatment methods, procedures of the health care, and attitudes of the health professionals were studied. Methods: The used material was part of the questionnaire regarding the Obesity Current Care Guideline. Electronic questionnaire was sent with an open link to the professionals and supervisors working in primary health care, special health care and public and private occupational health care. 760 professionals responded to the questionnaire. Here, 447 responses from professionals, who mainly work in the prevention and treatment of adults’ obesity, are used as data. Microsoft Excel 2208 -program and IBM SPSS Statistics 29.0 -program’s cross-tabulation and Chi-square test were used to analyze the results. Results: Half (52 %) of the professionals, who participated in the study, were familiarized with the updated obesity guideline. Nutritional therapists and doctors were familiarized more than other occupational groups (p<0,001). Of those, who had familiarized with the guideline, 45 % considered that the guideline has affected to the procedures of their work. The methods of the guideline were used in the health care to some degree, especially professionals brought up obesity topic into discussion and used lifestyle treatment. Professionals working mainly with adults estimated that health care procedures do not follow completely the guideline, and many professionals were not aware of the obesity prevention and treatment procedures of their organization and area. The attitudes of the professionals were mainly positive. One fourth of the responders did not consider that bringing up obesity topic into discussion is natural. Conclusions: The Obesity Current Care Guideline implementation should be improved, so that all health professionals would know the content of the guideline and take advantage it in their work. The procedures of the obesity prevention and treatment must be developed, since they were not in line with the guideline and many professionals were not aware of the procedures of their own organization, like weight management groups. Professionals’ attitudes were mainly positive indicating high interest towards obesity prevention and treatment. Some professionals considered bringing up obesity topic into discussion not being natural, which indicates the need for education and communication about already existing materials. These could help the work of the professionals and lead to better support of the patients. When examining the results of this thesis, it is essential to keep in mind the option of biased results, because of the small number of answers – the results cannot be generalized to total health care of Finland. However, the results can be used in developing the Obesity Current Care Guideline work and adults’ obesity prevention and treatment in the health care. The topic should be studied more with advanced methods and with a representative sample.
  • Maskulin, Viivi (2022)
    Tavoitteet. Ilmaston lämpeneminen on yksi suurimpia tulevaisuuden haasteita, jonka ehkäise-miseksi muutokset kulutuskäyttäytymisessä, yhteiskuntarakenteissa sekä yritystoiminnassa ovat tutkimustiedon mukaan välttämättömiä. Ruoka sekä ruoantuotanto ovat yksi merkittävim-mistä maapallon kantokykyä kuormittavista tekijöistä. Muutokset päästöjen vähentämisessä tai vaihtoehtoisesti seuraukset, joita ilmaston lämpeneminen aiheuttaa, tulevat koskettamaan erityi-sesti nuorten sukupolvia. Tässä tutkielmassa tavoitteena on pyrkiä ymmärtämään nuorten nä-kemyksiä ruoan valintaan vaikuttavista tekijöistä etenkin kestävyyden näkökulmasta. Samalla tavoitteena on tutkia, miten nuoret kokevat erilaiset keinot ja niiden vaikuttavuuden osana il-mastonmuutosta ehkäiseviä toimia. Tämän tutkimuksen tutkimuskysymykset ovat: millä tavoin ruoanvalintaan ja -käyttöön liittyvät tekijät jäsentyvät nuorten mielipiteissä sekä mitkä ovat ne tekijät, jotka nuoret kokevat edistävän tai estävän kestävyyttä ruoan tai syömisen näkökulmas-ta? Ruokavalintoja käsitellään yksilön valintojen, kuten poliittisen kulutuksen teorisointien sekä yhteiskunnallisten ohjauskeinojen ja -rakenteiden näkökulmasta. Menetelmät. Tutkimusasetelmassa hyödynnetään sekä laadullisia että määrällisiä menetelmiä. Kyselyllä kerättyä aineistoa analysoidaan pääosin laadullisin menetelmin, eli aineistolähtöisellä sisällönanalyysilla ja teemoittelulla. Analyysia täydennetään aineiston mahdollistaman määrälli-sen tarkastelun keinoin. Kyselyaineisto koostuu 44 nuoren aikuisen (15–29-vuotiaan) vastauk-sista. Tulokset ja johtopäätökset. Tämän tutkimuksen tuloksina ruoan valintaan vaikuttavina yksittäi-sinä tekijöinä määritti erityisesti elämäntilanne, ruoan hinta sekä kotimaisen ruoan suosiminen mahdollisuuksien mukaan. Ruokaan liittyvät ympäristöä kuormittavat tekijät nähtiin erityisesti rakenteellisena ongelmana, mutta omilla kulutusvalinnoilla koettiin olevan yhtä lailla merkitystä tulevaisuuden haasteita ratkottaessa. Ilmastonmuutoksen sekä ruokavalintojen yhteys koettiin olemassa olevana ongelmana, johon nuorten mielestä tulisi löytää ratkaisu. Nuoret kokevat ruo-kaan ja kulutukseen liittyvät tekijät moniulotteisena kokonaisuutena ja miettivät tulevaisuutta. Nuoret tiedostavat ruoan yhteyden ilmastokriisiin ja tahtoisivat oppia lisää ruokaan liittyvistä tekijöistä, jotta kestävämpien kulutusvalintojen tekeminen olisi helpompaa. Nuoret ovat valmiita muuttamaan omaa kulutustaan, mutta odottavat aktiivisia toimia myös vallanpitäjiltä.
  • Järvinen, Saraleena (2024)
    Background: Dairy has a culturally and economically quintessential role in European countries while significantly contributing to GHG emissions. However, flexitarian dairy consumers are scarcely researched, especially in Finland, one of the world’s most dairy-intense countries. There is a rising need for comprehensive research on dairy consumption and the role of dairy in everyday life food consumption practices. Objectives: With a social practice theoretical approach, this study aims to understand the role of dairy and dairy alternatives in the food preparation practice of Finns in North Ostrobothnia’s countryside. Daily food preparation and its performances can be defined as routine-like behaviour that consists of several interconnected elements: bodily and mental activities, things and their use, and background knowledge such as understanding, know-how, emotions, and aspirations. The main research objective is divided into two sub-themes: a) what kinds of competences, materials and meanings support the use of dairy in people’s daily food preparation practice, and b) what kinds of competences, materials and meanings promote a change in food preparation practice regarding the use of dairy alternatives. Methods: The data consisted of semi-structured interviews (n=11) gathered through discretionary chain-referral sampling. The study’s participants were required to be born after 1980, live in the countryside of North Ostrobothnia and consume dairy products regularly. The transcribed data was analysed by structuring and coding it into themes formed by elements of competences, materials, and meanings and their interconnections. Results and conclusions: Dairy holds quintessential value in routinised food preparation. Dairy’s role in food preparation was significant as interviewees had a vast amount of silent knowledge and skills on using dairy products to achieve fulfilling and tasty meals approved by others around the same table. Interviewees were accustomed to using particular ingredients provided at home, and dairy was often used in food preparation alongside those foodstuffs. Regularly used recipes often included some type of dairy product. The taste and texture of dairy were highly valued, having a strong cultural meaning: foods containing dairy were considered as ‘proper’ food. Meanings to use dairy alternatives instead of dairy were sustainable and ethical issues, health-related concerns, pure curiosity, and taste. Dairy alternatives were used as dairy products, which made them facile to use as new skills or know-how were not needed. In contrast, a lack of proven recipes and competences to prepare food from dairy alternatives also prevented interviewees from using them. Interviewees did not want to compromise the taste of everyday meals, and dairy alternatives were only used if they did not affect the taste or texture of the food. Preparing food from dairy was intertwined with other food consumption practices, such as eating and shopping for food, which could be concentrated on in future research. More comprehensive cultural change in food consumption practices is required to shift from dairy to plant-based alternatives.