Research funded by a grant from Center for Designing Foods to Improve Nutrition, Iowa State University.
The Effects of Marital Interaction, Depression and Self-Esteem on Dietary Self-Efficacy Among Married Couples1
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 24, Issue 24, pages 2209–2222, December 1994
How to Cite
Schafer, R. B., Keith, P. M. and Schafer, E. (1994), The Effects of Marital Interaction, Depression and Self-Esteem on Dietary Self-Efficacy Among Married Couples. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 24: 2209–2222. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.1994.tb02380.x
- Issue published online: 31 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
This investigation defines the construct of dietary self-efficacy and examines the personal and interactional factors that predict efficacy in food behavior. Dietary self-efficacy is the belief that one is capable of behavior necessary to produce a nutritionally healthful diet. A path model was tested that located dietary self-efficacy as a consequence of the character of marital interaction (role disagreement, equity/inequity, and family food interaction), personal conditions of depression and low self-esteem, age, and education. One hundred fifty-five married couples were randomly selected and interviewed. The path model predicted a direct causal effect of role disagreement and inequity on depression and an indirect effect on dietary self-efficacy mediated by depression and self-esteem. The findings supported the proposed model for wives but not for husbands, suggesting that dietary self-efficacy is a female construct. Wives continue to take major responsibility for food selection and preparation, including the nutrition of children. Therefore, dietary self-efficacy gains a position of centrality for wives that is not independent of the effect of everyday interaction.