Attitudes Towards Functional Foods Scale: Psychometric Proprieties and Adaptation for Use Among Adolescents

Leandro Oliveira, Rui Poínhos, Francisco Sousa

Abstract


Introduction: Functional foods are those that promote health and well-being and/or decrease the risk of certain chronic diseases. It is known that young people’ knowledge about functional foods is low. The aim of this study is to assess the psychometric proprieties of the “Attitudes towards Functional Foods Scale” in a sample of adolescents and, based on that analysis, adapting the scale for its use among this population group.
Material and Methods: After a pre-test, the scale was applied to 340 students attending the 3rd cycle of basic education in Terceira island (Azores, Portugal), whose ages ranged between 11 and 19 years (mean = 14.0, standard deviation = 1.2). We analyzed the scale’s internal consistency and construct validity.
Results: The study of the psychometric proprieties led to the exclusion of one item. Cronbach’s alpha (α = 0.876) showed a good internal consistency of the scale, and factor analysis revealed that, as the original (adults) version, it presents an unifactorial structure.
Discussion: The scale showed to be an instrument easy and quick to apply among adolescents. We emphasize that its application should be preceded by the clarification on the concept of functional foods in order to ensure the adequacy of the answers.
Conclusion: This study has demonstrated the adequacy of the Attitudes Towards Functional Foods Scale to assess Portuguese adolescents’ perception regarding functional foods, highlighting the need of using its adapted version.


Keywords


Adolescent; Azores; Functional Food; Life Style; Portugal; Psychometrics; Surveys and Questionnaires

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