Nutrition Education in Portuguese Medical Students: Impact on the Attitudes and Knowledge

Authors

  • Inês Barreiros Mota This author contributed equally to the work. Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto.
  • Inês Castelo This author contributed equally to the work. Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto. Escola Superior de Saúde. Universidade do Algarve. Faro.
  • Juliana Morais This author contributed equally to the work. Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto.
  • Miguel Anjos Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • João Pedro Costa Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Marta Dias Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Ana Fernandes Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Iara Leitão Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Urmilk Mohanlal Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Elisa Campos Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Maria João Cascais Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Ana Faria Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto. Comprehensive Health Research Centre. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Cláudia Marques Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto.
  • Rita Patarrão Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Diogo Pestana Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto.
  • Diana Teixeira Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto. Comprehensive Health Research Centre. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Jaime Cunha Branco Comprehensive Health Research Centre. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Unidade de Epidemiologia de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Serviço de Reumatologia. Hospital Egas Moniz. Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Ocidental. Lisboa.
  • Conceição Calhau Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto. https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9567-3379

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.20344/amp.11817

Keywords:

Curriculum, Education, Medical, Undergraduate, Nutritional Sciences/education, Portugal, Students

Abstract

Introduction: Nutrition has been underrepresented in the curriculum of many medical schools and therefore physicians do not feel adequately prepared to provide dietary counselling. The aim of the present study is to determine the impact of a Nutrition and Metabolism curricular unit on nutrition attitudes, knowledge and confidence on future clinical practice of medical students.
Material and Methods: All the students enrolled in the curricular unit (2017/2018) were invited to complete a questionnaire assessing their nutritional knowledge and eating habits at the beginning and at the end of the semester (n = 310).
Results: Initially, students reported good eating habits and nutrition knowledge. These aspects improved at the end of the study. Moreover, students reported that they felt more confident to do dietary counselling after intervention.
Discussion: Most medical students answered affirmatively to all questions related with good habits or eating behaviours, and the acquisition of knowledge had an impact in specific attitudes. After the Nutrition and Metabolism classes the students felt able to provide dietary counselling in different clinical settings, but none of the students felt extremely confident about their competencies for dietary counselling. This can be due to the fact that the students involved were in the first year of the integrated master’s degree in medicine, which is a preclinical year, and thus distant from the medical reality and from contact with patients.
Conclusion: Nutrition education can have a positive impact on attitudes and eating behaviours, knowledge and in the perception of competencies for dietary counselling.

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Author Biography

Inês Barreiros Mota, This author contributed equally to the work. Nutrition and Metabolism. NOVA Medical School | Faculdade de Ciências Médicas. Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. Lisboa. Center for Health Technology and Services Research. Porto.

Presidente do Conselho Jurisdicional - Ordem dos Nutricionistas Professora com agregação do Dept Bioquímica da FMUP. Doutoramento em 2002, FMUP. Agregação em Metabolismo, 2010, FMUP. Professora de Bioquímica Professora de Toxicologia Alimentar Professora de Nutrição Scopus Author ID: 6701578877

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Published

2020-04-01

How to Cite

1.
Mota IB, Castelo I, Morais J, Anjos M, Costa JP, Dias M, Fernandes A, Leitão I, Mohanlal U, Campos E, Cascais MJ, Faria A, Marques C, Patarrão R, Pestana D, Teixeira D, Branco JC, Calhau C. Nutrition Education in Portuguese Medical Students: Impact on the Attitudes and Knowledge. Acta Med Port [Internet]. 2020 Apr. 1 [cited 2022 Dec. 10];33(4):246-51. Available from: https://www.actamedicaportuguesa.com/revista/index.php/amp/article/view/11817

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Original