Date of Award

Spring 5-2011

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Nutrition and Food Systems

Committee Chair

Carol Connell

Committee Chair Department

Nutrition and Food Systems

Committee Member 2

Kathy Yadrick

Committee Member 2 Department

Nutrition and Food Systems

Committee Member 3

Jamie Zoellner

Committee Member 3 Department

Nutrition and Food Systems

Committee Member 4

Laura Downey

Committee Member 4 Department

Community Health Sciences

Committee Member 5

Susan Graham-Kresge

Committee Member 5 Department

Community Health Sciences


This study explored dietary behavior in terms of dietary intake, dietary intake change and dietary contributing factors in a sample of Hispanic males residing in southern Mississippi that are at various stages of the acculturation process. Grounded theory and the bidimensional acculturation model were incorporated to identify the dietary factors and assess acculturation in each participant. Qualitative and quantitative measures were used in data collection. Qualitative measurements included Semistructured interviews, a focus group, and photovoice with group interviews. The ARSMA-II, Marginality Scale, Fruit/Vegetable and Fat Food Screeners, a psychosocial dietary questionnaire, and the New Vital Signs Food Label for Health Literacy were quantitative instruments used to examine acculturation and dietary behavior. All interviews and questionnaires were interviewer-administered in either Spanish or English as specified by the participant. Grounded theory drove the data analysis. First, the ARSMA-II and Marginality scale scores were determined for each participant, and each participant was placed into one of four bidimensional acculturation groups. Second, three trained qualitative coders, used open, axial, and selective coding to extract codes, identify themes and main themes, draw connections between themes and identify and define core categories. Ill-defined and unclear themes were identified during this process, leading to the photovoice and group interviews which were used to clarify ill-defined themes. Constant comparison was used to incorporate the quantitative data into the qualitative data findings and compare data across groups. Dietary patterns and contributing factors for each acculturation group were identified and compared across groups, and a dietary acculturation conceptual framework was proposed. Information gained can be used to inform nutrition practice and nutrition intervention development relevant to Hispanic males.