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Revista Española de Nutrición Humana y Dietética

On-line version ISSN 2174-5145Print version ISSN 2173-1292


DIAZ MUNOZ, Gustavo Alfonso et al. Difference in levels of physical activity, sedentary lifestyle, and eating habits among university students from different health programs at a private university in Bogotá, Colombia. Rev Esp Nutr Hum Diet [online]. 2021, vol.25, n.1, pp.8-17.  Epub Nov 08, 2021. ISSN 2174-5145.


The promotion of healthy lifestyles by the health professional depends on their own habits, which are consolidated during university education. However, the variation in eating habits and physical activity among university students from different health programs is not known. Objective: Identify the differences in the levels of physical activity, sedentary lifestyle, and eating habits among students from different programs in the health area at a private university in Bogotá.

Material and Methods:

Cross-sectional study in undergraduate students of nursing, surgical instrumentation, optometry, medicine, and dentistry. Students were in the I to IV semester during August 2017. Physical activity (IPAQ-SF) and eating habits (questionnaire of frequency of consumption) were measured. The χ2 and Kruskal-Wallis tests were used for comparisons between programs.


692 students participated and 77.8% were women. Surgical instrumentation showed the lowest percentage of lunch consumption (88%; p=0.004); in the sample there was low consumption of all food groups, specifically dentistry had low consumption of cereals (29%; p=0.021) and nursing had low consumption of fruits (35%; p=0.04) and meat-eggs-legumes (35%; p=0.01). On the other hand, medicine presented the highest prevalence of high level of physical activity (41%; p=0.002) and nursing the highest percentage of low level (60%; p=0.01).


Differences were found in the levels of physical activity and eating habits among the different programs evaluated. Interventions at the curricular level and health promotion are necessary to improve university lifestyles.

Keywords : Exercise; Feeding Behavior; Students, Health Occupations; Students, Nursing; Students, Medical; Physical exercise; Food consumption frequency.

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