Submitted to: Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 3, 2012
Publication Date: July 1, 2012
Citation: Huye, H.F., Connell, C.L., Sample, A. 2012. Validity and reliability of the Delta Healthy Eating Attitudes Scale [abstract}. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 44:S75.
The objective of this study was to evaluate psychometric properties of an instrument developed to measure psychosocial factors related to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans for a nutrition intervention in the Lower Mississippi Delta (LMD). Social Cognitive Theory constructs social support (SS), self-efficacy (SE), and decisional balance (DB) theories were used. The target audience where members of women's social and civic organizations in the LMD participating in the nutrition intervention. The 49-item instrument targeted DB, SE, and SS for fruit, vegetable, whole grain, and sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption. Using a 4-point Likert scale, participants indicated their agreement level (strongly disagree to strongly agree) for each item during program enrollment. Questionnaires (320) were used for psychometric evaluation using exploratory factor analysis to determine if items measuring the theoretical constructs adequately explained the correlations among participant responses. The analysis was restricted to a three-factor solution for each food group to confirm the hypothesized constructs. Factors were subjected to reliability testing using Chronbach's alpha. Factor analysis confirmed hypothesized constructs for all food groups with the exception of the SSB scale, in which items for SS loaded with items for SE. Cronbach's alpha for each subscale ranged from 0.63 to 0.94, but improved when the SSB subscales were removed, ranging from 0.84 to 0.94. Findings of the present study indicated acceptable validity and reliability indices of DB, SE, and SS fruit, vegetable, and whole grain subscales. The SSB subscale will require further modification. By developing, testing, and validating measurements examining these factors, nutrition education interventions can be developed and evaluated to maximize use of the constructs in promotion of behavior change.