Korean J Nutr.  2013 Apr;46(2):177-185. 10.4163/kjn.2013.46.2.177.

Dietary behavior and nutritional status among Chinese female college students residing in Korea

  • 1Department of Nutritional Science and Food Management, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 120-750, Korea.
  • 2Department of Food and Nutrition, Daejeon University, Daejeon 300-716, Korea. kimkinam@dju.kr


The purpose of this study was to analyze the nutritional status of Chinese female college students in Korea, and to investigate changes in their dietary behavior after residing in Korea. The subjects included 114 Chinese female college students currently studying in Korea. General characteristics and dietary behaviors before and after residing in Korea were investigated. Daily nutrients and food intake were assessed using a one-day 24-hour recall. Consumption of most nutrients, namely calcium, iron, zinc, vitamin B2, vitamin C, and folate was estimated to fall below the EAR for the Korean population. The proportions of subjects whose intake were estimated below the EAR for folate, calcium, vitamin B2, iron, zinc, and vitamin C were 93.0%, 71.9%, 66.7%, 65.8%, 65.8%, and 63.2%, respectively. In the current study, the dietary behavior scores fell significantly after Chinese students immigrated to Korea (p < 0.001); increased frequency of meal skipping, less consumption of fruits and vegetables, irregular meal pattern, and imbalanced diet were some of the significant changes among Chinese students before and after residing in Korea. In addition, consumption of most nutrients, including dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin B group, vitamin C, and folate in the Worsened Group was significantly lower, compared with the No Change Group (p < 0.05). According to the changes in dietary behaviors, consumption of most nutrients, including dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin B group, vitamin C, and folate in the Worsened Group was significantly lower than in the No Change Group (p < 0.05). In conclusion, these results indicated that Chinese students practiced more unhealthy dietary behaviors after residing in Korea and Chinese students residing in Korea showed poor nutrient-based diet quality. Conduct of a follow-up study using blood profile tests is needed in order to assess the nutritional status of Chinese students. These results would be used in planning of a nutritional surveillance program for Chinese students.


Chinese female students; immigrant; dietary changes; food intake; nutritional status; dietary quality

MeSH Terms

Ascorbic Acid
Asian Continental Ancestry Group
Dietary Fiber
Emigrants and Immigrants
Folic Acid
Nutritional Status
Vitamin A
Ascorbic Acid
Folic Acid
Vitamin A

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