“I am not really into the government telling me what I need to eat”: exploring dietary beliefs, knowledge, and practices among ethnically diverse communities in England

  • Abimbola S. Ojo (Creator)
  • Lawrence A. Nnyanzi (Creator)
  • Emma Giles (Creator)
  • Louisa Ells (Creator)
  • Sylvester R. Okeke (Creator)
  • Kobi V. Ajayi (Creator)
  • Obasanjo Afolabi Bolarinwa (Creator)



Abstract Background Communities with diverse ethnicity in high-income countries are disproportionately affected by poor diet-related health outcomes. In England, the United Kingdom’s government’s healthy eating dietary resources are not well accepted and are underutilised among this population. Thus, this study explored perceptions, beliefs, knowledge, and practices around dietary intake among communities with African and South Asian ethnicity residing in Medway, England. Methods This qualitative study generated data from 18 adults aged 18 and above using a semi-structured interview guide. These participants were sampled using purposive and convenience sampling strategies. All the interviews were conducted in English over the telephone, and responses were thematically analysed. Results Six overarching themes were generated from the interview transcripts: eating patterns, social and cultural factors, food preferences and routines, accessibility and availability, health and healthy eating, and perceptions about the United Kingdom government’s healthy eating resources. Conclusion The results of this study indicate that strategies to improve access to healthy foods are required to improve healthy dietary practices among the study population. Such strategies could help address this group’s structural and individual barriers to healthy dietary practices. In addition, developing a culturally responsive eating guide could also enhance the acceptability and utilisation of such resources among communities with ethnic diversity in England.
Date made available2023

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