Date of Award

Spring 2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


Health and Kinesiology

First Advisor

Haslyn E. Hunte

Committee Member 1

Gerald Hyner

Committee Member 2

Abigail Borron


Objective: Multiple peer-reviewed studies have found an association between fruit and vegetable consumption and lower risk for diseases such as hypertension, stroke and cancer. In other related studies, education level, retail food environment, and fruit and vegetable consumption were also examined together to discover patterns and associations. Currently, Black males have a higher risk for poor health outcomes. Limited research has focused specifically on Black men's fruit and vegetable consumption. This study explored the association between education level, food store access (measured by proximity) and fruit and vegetable consumption in black African American men.

Design: The data for this study was obtained using three sources; (1) the 2011 Black Men's Health Study from 12 Indiana counties, (2) 2006-2011 Food Atlas Documentation, and (3) the 2007-2011 United States Census data. This study utilized multilevel regression modeling to estimate the association between fruit and vegetable consumption, education level and food access.

Setting: 12 Indiana counties

Results: Among the variables of interest, this study demonstrated greater fruit consumption among Black males with the highest level of education. The proximity to grocery stores was not associated with consumption, although healthcare coverage and number of children in household were all statistically (p< 0.05) associated with fruit and vegetable consumption.

Conclusion: The findings suggest a need for more research in this area. Specifically, research will need to address food availability, food store type and distance to food store.