The study sought to develop an understanding of identities related to eating patterns between eating at home and school. The study showed different cases to see if religion had an impact on if individuals eat differently at home than in school. The main source of information used in this study was gathered on the campus of Northeastern Illinois University in 2005. Ninety one students were asked questions pertaining to their nationality, religion, ethnicity, work, family generation / family background, living situations, and regular eating habits. Open ended and snowball sampling interviews were conducted. Individuals involved in the interviews were analyzed by eating habits. Participants were reported to be both stable and dynamic and were shaped by participants’ life course experiences. The study needed to expand it’s sample size and research questions. We needed to understand food choice processes and meanings that people bring to and derive from eating.
Statement of the Problem
The complex question of why people eat as they do continues to be of great interest. It is impossible to give enough credit to the role that food plays into our lives and the development of societies; Americans, immigrants, etc. Many researchers have advocate changes in food practices among Americans for health, safety, or environmental reasons yet success in achieving these planned changes is often indefinable (Bisogni, Connors, Devine, Sobal 2002). Food choice has been recognized as a process that involves psychological, social, cultural, religious, economic, and biological factors. Over time these factors interact with a person’s life course events and experiences to result in individual preferences and other considerations. While conducting this research religion would be the greatest signal of the respondent’s satisfaction with the food choices given by Northeastern Illinois University. Religion can influence a person’s food choice because of food preferences. For example, if a person is Muslim they would prefer Halal or Kosher foods, however NEIU does not provide these specific choices. Different religions all have their own variations on food and diet and can have an influence on how students at NEIU eat at school. Ethnicity may also play a role toward food related decisions; nevertheless it is religion that is the grand influencer on food decisions.
The responsibility for food, nutrition, health consequence is based on individuals eating habits. In this study we will be focusing on whether people eat differently at home, school, or the work place. Many factors can apply to this research: gender, nationality, ethnicity, convenience, race, social class, income, etc. While some research has only focused on economics and fast food, this focus is going to be based on different eating habits surrounded by home and school.
Bisogni, Connors, Devine, Sobal (2002) designed a study required to develop an understanding of identities related to eating. The design they approached were in depth interviews examining identity and eating from the viewpoint of adults. The study included seventeen middle class, while adults (eight men, nine women) who were purposively enlisted to vary in gender, age, household composition, and ways of eating using convenience and snowball sampling. The interviews were analyzed using the comparative method and the results showed that individual’s food choices related to preferred behaviors, personal qualities, and social categories. The participants varied in the number, type, and complexity of identities involved in eating. The concept of identity may help researchers understand food choice process.
Jensen, Holm (1999) distinction provides information on a study focusing on the differences between men and women in regard to their preferences for food and types of meals in relation to the cultural purpose of foods as figurative markers of femininity or...