African Americans experience greater rates of obesity and food insecurity compared to White Americans, and older African Americans may be at particular risk of food insecurity. Nutrition education provided to this group should be carefully evaluated to assess whether it meet their needs.
This study aimed to assess older African Americans perceived nutrition education needs and suggestions for improvement of an existing nutrition education curriculum through qualitative focus group discussions.
Study Design, Setting, Participants
Three trained African American facilitators conducted five focus group discussions (FGD) with 25 African American participants in SNAP-Ed. Participants were majority retired (n = 28, 72%) and over 60 (n = 18, 72%). Focus groups were conducted both via zoom and in person according to participant preferences.
FGD guides asked participants about their general perceptions of nutrition education and suggestions for improving service provided to African Americans. Transcripts of FGDs were coded inductively using Dedoose software.
Though the discussion guide did not ask participants about their backgrounds or history with food, participants in all discussions brought up their own personal experiences with food and how they perceived their diets to be healthier when they were younger. Participants described an existing nutrition education curriculum as race-neutral and said that lessons needed to address African American history and culture.
Nutrition education programs serving older African American adults should acknowledge their personal histories with food and agriculture and incorporate elements of African American food history and food culture.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - Education
Supplementary data related to this article can be found at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jneb.2022.04.169.
Appendix. SUPPLEMENTARY DATA
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