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A Review of Health Literacy and Its Relationship to Nutrition Education

Gibbs, Heather PhD, RD, LDN; Chapman-Novakofski, Karen PhD, RD, LDN

doi: 10.1097/TIN.0b013e31826f8dc5
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Health literacy has emerged as a focus of increasing research in the medical literature, yet it has received little attention in the nutrition literature. Because nutrition practice is an important sector of the health care environment and reduced health literacy confers known health consequences, dietitians should be equipped with an understanding of how health literacy extends to nutritional care. Identification instruments that are available fail to provide an understanding of nutrition literacy. Nutrition literacy may include knowledge of nutrition principles and nutrition skills. Additional research into the development of appropriate nutrition literacy tools and their application is needed.

Department of Family & Consumer Sciences, Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, Illinois (Dr Gibbs); and Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Illinois, Urbana (Drs Gibbs and Chapman-Novakofski).

Correspondence: Heather Gibbs, PhD, RD, LDN, Department of Family & Consumer Sciences, Olivet Nazarene University, Box 6049, One University Ave, Bourbonnais, IL 60901 (

The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.