The role of Dutch general practitioners in nutrition communication

S.M.E. van Dillen, G.J. Hiddink, M.A. Koelen, C. de Graaf, C.M.J. van Woerkum

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingAbstract

Abstract

Purpose: The primary purpose of our study is to assess the current role of Dutch general practitioners (GPs) in nutrition communication. GPs’ perceptions of nutrition communication and actual nutrition communication behaviour were measured. To our knowledge, nutrition communication styles were not studied before. Methods: On the basis of focus group interviews with 81 GPs, we developed a questionnaire. Questionnaires were sent to 600 GPs; 267 GPs completed the questionnaire (response rate 45%). The questionnaire contained questions about perceptions of lifestyle, perceptions about nutrition communication, perceptions of nutrition information, patient complaints, office features, co-operation with other health professionals, nutrition communication styles, frequency of nutrition communication and actual nutrition communication behaviour. Data were analysed with SPSS, using univariate variance analysis tests and multiple linear regression. Results/Findings: In the past month, nutrition was discussed in 14% of the consultations. Fifty-six percent of the GPs mentioned that they generally took the initiative themselves to communicate about nutrition. Nutrition was most often discussed in patient complaints, like overweight/obesity (73% always), diabetes mellitus (72%) and hypercholesterolaemia (68%). GPs’ perceptions of nutrition communication were predictive for the 5 different nutrition communication styles (total explained variances up to 57%). The motivational nutrition communication style was the best predictor for actual nutrition communication behaviour (explained variance 35%). Conclusions: We conclude that GPs play an important role in nutrition communication. Our study suggests that GPs combined multiple nutrition communication styles, dependent of the specific circumstances. Attention to nutrition communication styles in vocational training programs of GPs’ trainees might be useful.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication4th Annual Conference of the International Society of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 16-18 June 2005
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherISBNPA
Pages41
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Event4th Annual Conference of the International Society of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity -
Duration: 16 Jun 200518 Jun 2005

Conference

Conference4th Annual Conference of the International Society of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity
Period16/06/0518/06/05

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