The effects of a self-efficacy enhancing Internet intervention on the dietary management of cholesterol
Dr. Claire P. Donaghy, PhD, RN
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Cardiovascular disease continues to be the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States. Elevated serum cholesterol is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Diets high in saturated fat and cholesterol contribute to elevation in blood cholesterol. The purpose of this study was to develop and test a self-efficacy enhancing Internet intervention for dietary reduction of cholesterol. Data were analyzed on 3 8 employees of a community college who participated in an Internet dietary change intervention during the fall semester of 2003. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) controlling for baseline self-efficacy did not reveal significant differences in LDL cholesterol, dietary adherence, nutrition knowledge, or self-efficacy as hypothesized. Self-efficacy did not mediate nutrition knowledge or dietary adherence. ANCOVA controlling for baseline LDL cholesterol revealed significantly improved LDL cholesterol in the self-efficacy group (p = .04). Website use also differed significantly between groups with the self-efficacy group logging on an average of 119 times compared to 19 times for the education group (p < .000). The small sample size and healthy baseline habits of the sample possibly affected study results. LDL cholesterol decreased in the self-efficacy group while increasing in the education group. Both groups had high baseline self-efficacy and nutrition knowledge that remained stable. Improvements in dietary adherence to a cholesterol-lowering diet were noted for both groups. In summary, the self-efficacy enhancing Internet dietary change intervention did not produce the hypothesized results. The Internet intervention was readily used by participants, especially by the group who received self-efficacy support. Further study of behavioral change interventions using the Internet is recommended.
This dissertation has also been disseminated through the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. Dissertation/thesis number: 3191078; ProQuest document ID: 305384963. The author still retains copyright.
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