• Findings from a national home food environment survey: How does Georgia compare?

      Hermstad, April; Haardoeerfer, Regine; Woodruff, Rebecca; Raskind, Ilana; Kegler. Michelle; Emory University (Georgia Public Health Association, 2017)
      Background: Aspects of the home food environment, both social and physical, influence healthy eating and weight management practices. Healthy eating, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015, centers on balancing calories consumed and calories expended for weight management combined with consumption of nutrient-dense foods and drinks. Obesity and excess weight increase the risk of numerous chronic diseases including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. With this presentation, we will explore how Georgia home food environments and eating behaviors are similar or different from the rest of the nation. Methods: Survey participants (n=4,942) were recruited from a reputable online survey panel service. Eligible participants were English-speaking U.S. adults ages 18-75; the final sample was representative of the U.S. population in terms of age, race/ethnicity, geographic region, and income level. Georgia participants represented 3% of the overall sample (n=158). Incentives for completing the 30-minute online survey were provided by the panel service. Survey measures included sociodemographics, healthy eating behaviors (e.g., fruit, vegetable, and fat intake), social home food environment (e.g., food shopping/preparation, household member support) physical home food environment (e.g., food/drink inventories/placement), household food security and coping strategies, and broader contextual factors (e.g., the community food environment, and community capacity and assets). Results: Descriptive data to be presented will include characteristics of participant households, including levels of social and environmental support for healthy eating. Prevalence estimates for key environmental (food/drink inventories/placement, social support among household members) and behavioral (dietary behavior) variables across the sample and among Georgia participants will also be shared. Statistically significant differences between Georgia and the nation will be highlighted. Conclusions: This study presents a unique opportunity to explore socio-environmental influences on healthy eating behaviors nationwide and specifically among Georgians. Findings may be useful in informing tailored messages, healthy eating interventions, and related public health priorities for the state of Georgia.