How to use Quick Guide: Assessing Food/Nutrition & Culture ?

The Quick Guides are designed to help dietitians in assessing food and nutrition history of their patients/clients from a variety of ethnic backgrounds. Relevant areas from the Nutrition Care Process Terminologies (NCPT) are selected to help assess patients with a variety of health conditions such as; cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, overweight/obesity and renal disease. Information regarding commonly consumed foods from different food groups, unique meal practices, use of alternative medicines, treatments/therapies and use of herbs/supplements were gathered with the help of survey responses from dietitians with knowledge in dietary practices from those regions.

Dietetic professionals may choose to use information provided in the guide to frame open ended questions for their clients. Some examples of open ended questions are as follows:

  • Describe the frequency of saturated fat intake; such as coconut oil, ghee and butter in cooking? (refer to “saturated fat “ section under “Macronutrient intake”)
  • Do you practice fasting? If yes, describe the nature of fasting (full day, intermittent modified fasting)? (refer to section on “Unique Meal Practices” )
  • Describe any unique meal practices followed during religious holidays? Are there any foods consumed or avoided during such occasions? (refer to section on “Unique Meal Practices” )
  • Describe the role acculturation to USA has played on your eating habits? Which new foods or dietary habits have you adopted and which ones from your culture have you not been able to follow? (refer to “Other Questions” section)

Quick Guides have been developed for Ecuador, India, Saudi Arabia and the Philippines. More will be added over time, so be sure to check back.