Assessing the moderating role of knowledge on the relationship between consumption determinants and intake of fruit and vegetables: a comparative study of health and non health work

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Ghana is already battling with infectious diseases such as malaria, hiv/aids, and tuberculosis, but also currently experiencing a surge in non-communicable diseases (ncds) such as stroke, heart diseases, diabetes and cancers. Adequate fruit and vegetable (fv) consumption has been associated with reduced incidence of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, some cancers, and obesity, as well as increased immunity and lifespan. The world health organisation (who) therefore recommends daily consumption of at least 400g of fv representing five (5) daily servings of 80g each. However, consumption levels of fv is generally low worldwide, and even lower in low-and middle-income countries, such as ghana. The main objective of this study was to study the moderating role of knowledge of the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables consumption on the relationship between consumption determinants and consumption frequency, with a particular focus on raw fv; comparing health and non-health workers in the kumasi metropolis. The study employed a cross-sectional study design, with a sample size of 200 formal sector workers, comprising of doctors, nurses, teachers and bank workers. Participants were purposively and conveniently selected to complete a self-administered questionnaire with both close-ended and open-ended questions with 200 questionnaires analysed with both descriptive and inferential statistics. Results of the study indicated that only 8.5% of the respondents had consumption recommendation knowledge; mean raw fv consumption frequency of respondents was 2.18 (approximately once a week); in terms of fv consumption determinants, availability of fv was not much of an issue compared to food safety concerns; and consumption recommendation knowledge significantly increased the effect of consumption determinants on consumption frequency (regression coefficient = 1.02, p-value = 0.02). There was no significant difference between health and non-health workers in terms of all three (3) variables under study: fv consumption recommendation knowledge (p-value 0.31), consumption frequency (p-value = 0.90) and consumption determinants (p-value = 0.17). Therefore it was recommended that much effort be put into creating awareness on recommended fv consumption targets, and how to achieve these targets, especially among health workers, in order to improve consumption among the populace.
A thesis submitted to the department of marketing and corporate strategy, college of humanities and social sciences, school of business, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of master of business administration (marketing)