Three hundred and seventy-four general practitioners (GPs) in Denmark filled in a questionnaire on attitudes to include information on gender and diet in the strategy for prevention of coronary heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, and overweight/underweight. Risk factors for disease in general were ranked as follows: smoking, alcohol, stress, diet, physical exercise, heredity and hygiene. The patients' lack of motivation, insufficient time for each patient, and inadequate knowledge about nutrition were stated as barriers to dietary counselling. The GPs stated that the gender of the patient was important only to the counselling on osteoporosis. Lack of time and insufficient knowledge were perceived as barriers for including gender specific issues in prevention. It is concluded that GPs consider dietary counselling important but lack time and knowledge. The results point at a need for better pre- and postgraduate training in nutrition, and for a better reimbursement system for time spent on prevention.
Three hundred and seventy-four general practitioners (GPs) in Denmark filled in a questionnaire on practices regarding prevention of coronary heart disease (CHD), cancer, osteoporosis, and overweight/underweight. Half of the GPs were questioned about the issue of prevention based upon female case stories and the other half on male case stories with identical wording. The GPs more often in relation to: Prevention of CHD gave dietary counselling and recommended weight loss to slightly overweight male than female patients. Prevention of cancers gave dietary counselling and recommended weight loss and increase of exercise to female than to male patients. Prevention of osteoporosis recommended a supplement of calcium and vitamin D to female than to male patients. Treatment of underweight recommended weight gain and discussion of psycho-social issues to underweight female than male patients. In conclusion, GPs distinguish between men and women in relation to prevention strategies in general practice. There is a need for well-described prevention and action strategies with relevant gender differentiation for use in general practice.