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19.05.2018 | Original Paper | Ausgabe 6/2018

Journal of Community Health 6/2018

Gardening for Health: Patterns of Gardening and Fruit and Vegetable Consumption Among the Navajo

Journal of Community Health > Ausgabe 6/2018
India J. Ornelas, Katie Osterbauer, Lisa Woo, Sonia K. Bishop, Desiree Deschenie, Shirley A. A. Beresford, Kevin Lombard


American Indians, including Navajo, are disproportionately affected by obesity and diabetes, in part due to diet-related health behaviors. The purpose of this study was to assess the patterns of gardening and fruit and vegetable (FV) consumption among residents in two communities on the Navajo Nation in order to inform a community gardening intervention. We analyzed survey data collected from participants in the Yéego Gardening study conducted in two communities in the Navajo Nation (N = 169). We found that 51% of the sample gardened, and on average participants gardened 8.9 times per month. Lack of time (53%) and financial barriers, such as gas for transportation or irrigation (51 and 49%, respectively), were reported as barriers to gardening. Most participants reported low levels of self-efficacy (80%) and behavioral capability (82%) related to gardening. Those with higher levels of gardening self-efficacy and behavioral capability reported more frequent gardening. Average daily FV consumption was 2.5 servings. Most participants reported high levels of self-efficacy to eat FV daily (64%) and high behavioral capability to prepare FV (66%). There was a positive association between FV consumption and gardening, with those gardening more than 4 times per month eating about 1 more serving of FV per day than those gardening 4 or fewer times per month. Further research is needed to better understand how gardening can increase fruit and vegetable availability and consumption among residents of the Navajo Nation.

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