Relationship between Dietary Behaviours and Health Literacy among Elderly Population of Pokhara Metropolitan of Nepal


  • Associate Prof. Dr. Dipendra School of Health and Allied Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Pokhara University, Nepal
  • Ms. Rima Master of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Pokhara University, Nepal



Dietary behaviour, Elderly, Health literacy


Background: Health literacy, the ability to understand and use health-related information, is crucial for maintaining good health. Low health literacy poses significant challenges to maintaining optimal dietary behaviours of the elderly. Therefore, understanding the relationship between dietary behaviours and health literacy is important.

Objectives: This study aims to examine the relationship of dietary behaviours with health literacy of the elderly.

Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted among 239 elderlies in Pokhara Metropolitan from February 2023 to July 2023. Multistage sampling procedure was applied. The questionnaire included socio-demographic characteristics, five domains of the Health Literacy Questionnaire and dietary behaviour related questions. Multiple logistic regression was used to examine the associations.

Results: The proportion of people with low health literacy level across each of the domains were: (i) feeling understood and supported by healthcare providers (85.4%), (ii) having sufficient information to manage my own health (94.6%), (iii) social support for health (74.1%), (iv) ability to find the good health information (68.6%), and (v) understand the health information well enough to know what to do (78.2%), respectively. The overall health literacy among the elderly was found to be inadequate i.e., 74.9%. There was no significant association between being vegetarian vs non-vegetarian (AOR=0.60, 95% CI: 0.28-1.31) and health literacy. Participants who consumed fruits for less than 3 days a week and vegetables for less than 5 days a week were 1.85 times (AOR=1.85, 95% CI: 0.94-3.36) and 5.14 times (AOR=5.14, 95% CI: 2.17-12.21, p <0.001) more likely to have low health literacy as compared to participants who consumed fruits and vegetables more than 3 days and 5 days a week.

Conclusion: The study revealed that three-fourths of the elderly individuals had low health literacy. The study highlights implementing interventions for health literacy is essential to empower elderly individuals with the knowledge and skills needed for practicing sustainable dietary practices.


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Original Article


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Relationship between Dietary Behaviours and Health Literacy among Elderly Population of Pokhara Metropolitan of Nepal. IJPHAP [Internet]. 2024 Jun. 7 [cited 2024 Jun. 20];3(5):107-19. Available from: