Multi-level influences on seafood consumption among Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program participants in New Orleans, Louisiana

Date

August 2023

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Abstract

Seafood is a lean, nutrient dense protein source that is recommended for weekly consumption based on the benefits for human health, yet only 10% of Americans meet the recommendation. The purpose of this study was to explore social-ecological factors associated with seafood consumption among Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants in New Orleans, Louisiana using a quantitative cross-sectional research design and survey instrument. Results showed only 50% of study participants (N = 238) consumed at least two weekly servings of seafood. Logistic regression analyses were conducted to assess the relationship between participants’ sociodemographics characteristics, knowledge of the health and environmental benefits of seafood, social support and group norms, and the influence of policies, public health campaigns, and media and seafood consumption. Race (p = .037, OR= .371) and children in household (p = .007, OR = .565) were statistically significant sociodemographic characteristics. Relative to the participants’ knowledge of the health and environmental benefits of seafood, the model was not statistically significant, χ2(1) = .000, p = 1.00, Nagelkerke R2 = .000. Families that consume seafood (p < .001, OR = 3.694) and local New Orleans culture (p = .008, OR = 1.962) were significant intrapersonal predictors. At the societal level, the significant predictors included awareness of seafood-related policies and messaging through Eat Fit Nola (p < .001) and an unawareness through LiveWell Louisiana (p = .030), SNAP-Ed (p = .005), family/friends (p = .015), and social media (p = .039). Crosstabulations using Pearson’s chi-square and Cramer’s V tests were conducted to examine participants’ perceptions relative to 15 statements and the influence of accessibility, availability, and cost and seafood consumption. There was a significant relationship between the statement “I worry about mercury when eating seafood” and seafood consumption, χ2(1) = 6.183, p = .013, Cramer’s V = .191 and seafood consumption. There was no statistically significant relationship between all other factors. Based on the findings from this study, comprehensive health promotion and education is needed to address low levels of seafood consumption among SNAP participants. Further exploration is needed to understand the potential role of family engagement to increase seafood consumption.

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Health Sciences, Nutrition, Health Sciences, Public Health

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