Main Article Content
Pregnant women are at a high risk for foodborne illness, the function of the immune cell type decreases, which can possibly lead to birth defects. This study was conducted to examine the relationships between perceived risks and perceived barriers with safe food consuming behavior in pregnant women. The sample included 194 pregnant women in Chiang Mai. The main research instruments included a perceived risks of foodborne illness scale (r=0.81), a perceived barriers of safe food consuming scale (r=0.81), and a safe food consuming behavior scale (r=0.78). The relationships were analyzed using Pearson product correlation coefficient.
The results showed that perceived risks ( =30.14, S.D.=4.23, Total score=48), perceived barriers ( =23.40, S.D.=5.58, Total score=51), and safe food consuming behavior ( =66.15, S.D.=8.24, Total score=102) were found to be at a high, a moderate, and a high level, respectively. The behavior of selecting food shops and cooking utensils which are safe for consumers was at a moderate level. Through Pearson product correlation coefficient, safe food consuming behavior was associated with perceived risks (r = .17, p < .05) and perceived barriers (r = -.35, p < .01).
The results indicated that safe food consuming behavior among pregnant women should be promoted, through assessing their behavior, perceived risks, and perceived barriers. In addition, health education should be provided, covering all aspects: consuming safe food based on 5 principles of food, consuming safe food in general, and selecting food shops and cooking utensils which are safe for consumers, especially focusing on the last aspects.