Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Food Science and Human Nutrition


Nutritional Sciences

First Advisor

Donna M. Winham


The food security status of college students has a lasting impact during and after their college career. The level of food security has an impact on their diet and their ability to perform in class, and ultimately shapes their eating habits for the rest of their adult life. The Dietary Guidelines from 2010 suggest consuming at least five servings of fruits and vegetables (FV) per day, at least 20 grams of fiber per day, and less than 30% of total daily calories from fat. International college students coming to the United States to study are experiencing the same dietary changes as domestic students; however, they are also undergoing various degrees of acculturation and adjustment to a new host country.

The goals of this research are to 1) determine the food security status of students at Iowa State University (ISU); 2) assess the dietary intakes of these students, specifically the total fat, fruit, vegetable, and fiber intakes of students at ISU; 3) determine the relationships between food security and dietary acculturation for international students; and 4) assess association with dietary acculturation and dietary intakes of international students.

The online survey responses indicate that many students are food insecure and would like to receive information on where to go and who to talk to if they are having trouble accessing food. The majority of students are not meeting the recommended FV or fiber intakes and are consuming a diet high in fat. International students, who are less acculturated, are not consuming as much fat as their acculturated peers but the majority of international students are not eating enough FV or fiber.

Future research should include developing ways to decrease food insecurity on college campuses while providing healthy food options. In addition, new programs should be developed to help students facing problems with food security, increase overall food access, and enhance food assistance to students on college campuses.

Copyright Owner

Molly B. Hiller



File Format


File Size

104 pages