Journal List > J Nutr Health > v.48(4) > 1081402

J Nutr Health. 2015 Aug;48(4):335-343. Korean.
Published online August 31, 2015.
© 2015 The Korean Nutrition Society
Evaluation of dietary behavior and nutritional status of elementary school students in Jeju using nutrition quotient
Mi Na Boo,1,** Su Kyung Cho,2,** and Kyong Park1,2
1Department of Nutrition Education, Graduate School of Education, Yeungnam University, Daegu 705-717, Korea.
2Department of Food and Nutrition, Yeungnam University, Gyeongbuk 712-749, Korea.

To whom correspondence should be addressed. tel: +82-53-810-2879, Email:

**These two authors contributed equally to this study.

Received May 26, 2015; Revised June 12, 2015; Accepted June 15, 2015.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.



The aim of this study was to evaluate the food behavior and nutritional status of elementary school students in the Jeju area using Nutrition Quotient (NQ).


The subjects were 440 students (235 boys and 205 girls) in the fifth and sixth grade at four elementary schools located in Jeju. Demographic, lifestyle, and environmental information was collected using a self-reported questionnaire. The food behavior checklist for children's Nutrition Quotient (NQ), consisting of 19 items, and nutrition education related information were also obtained.


The mean score of the children's NQ was poor, reaching 60.3 points. The percentage distribution of NQ grade was 19.8% (lowest), 18.6% (low), 45.0% (medium), 10.7% (high), and 5.9% (highest) and the factor scores for balance, diversity, abstinence, regularity, and practice were 56.6, 68.4, 71.3, 57.4, and 54.8 points, respectively. Compared with the NQ cut-off points for defining malnutrition (balance; 57, diversity; 87, abstinence; 66, regularity; 69, and practice; 67 point), average score of abstinence factor was only above the cut-off point and scores of the other factors were below the cut-off point. Subjects with higher NQ scores tended to have higher levels of exercise activity (p < 0.001), frequency of family meals (p < 0.01), and father's educational levels (p < 0.01) compared to those with lower NQ score. NQ score showed positive association with nutrition education experience and practice (p < 0.001)


NQ score of elementary school students residing in Jeju was lower than the national average. More opportunities should be provided for participation in nutrition education, which incorporates a range of program strategies, as well as communication and education activities.

Keywords: nutrition quotient; Jeju island; children; nutritional status; dietary behavior


Table 1
General characteristics of children and families in Jeju area
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Table 2
Nutrition Quotient(NQ) grade by demographic, lifestyle and family characteristics (n = 440)
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Table 3
Nutrition Quotient(NQ)factor scores by demographic, lifestyle and family characteristics (n = 440)
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Table 4
Nutrition quotient(NQ) grade by the nutrition education experience and practice
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This research was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning (NRF-2014R1A1A3049866).

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