Korean J Community Nutr.  2021 Aug;26(4):259-269. 10.5720/kjcn.2021.26.4.259.

A Study on the Dietary and Lifestyle Changes of Middle-Aged Women in the Gwangju Area in the COVID-19 Era

Affiliations
  • 1Master course, Major in Food and Nutrition, Graduate School, Chonnam National University, Gwangju, Korea
  • 2Professor, Division of Food and Nutrition, Chonnam National University, Gwangju, Korea

Abstract


Objectives
This study aimed to investigate the changes in the eating habits and lifestyle of middle-aged women in Gwangju during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Methods
A total of 428 middle-aged women aged between 40 and 60 participated in a survey relating to general information, food and lifestyle, health functional food, and menopausal symptoms. The correlation between the variables was analyzed.
Results
In the positive habits, the intake of nutritional supplements for immunity enhancement increased the most, followed by the use of media to learn healthy eating tips, and diets including healthy food. Negative habits increased in the order of frequency of taking delivery orders, levels of stress or anxiety, and time spent sitting or watching movies. In the case of recommended foods, the intake increased the most in the order of eggs, fruits, vegetables, milk/dairy products, and seaweed. Non-recommended foods increased in the order of meat, bread, rice, and noodles. The awareness of health functional foods was in the increasing order of interest, knowledge, consumption experience, and purchase amount. The type of health functional food intake was in the increasing order of probiotics, multivitamin and mineral supplements, vitamin C, collagen, and omega-3. Menopausal symptoms were in the increasing order of bone and joint pain, poor sleep quality, emotional ups and downs, loneliness, and feeling of emptiness. In the correlation of major variables, positive habits showed a significant positive correlation with recommended food intake and the recognition of health functional foods. Negative habits showed a significant positive correlation with non-recommended food intake and a significant positive correlation with menopausal symptoms. Recommended food intake showed a significant positive correlation with health functional food recognition and intake and menopausal symptoms.
Conclusions
This study suggests that it is necessary to establish social measures to reduce the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on middle-aged women and to ensure effective self-management through a healthy lifestyle since the pandemic has a long-term impact.

Keyword

COVID-19; middle-aged women; dietary and lifestyle change; health functional food; menopausal symptoms
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