To increase children's fruit and vegetable consumption using nutrition education and active choice principles.
Study Design, Setting, Participants, Intervention
The study used pre-/post-intervention comparison design. The intervention utilized a dual module of the Social Cognitive Theory (SCT) and active choice (AC) for second graders in one school in Northern, NJ. For nine months, the intervention group received a combination of nutrition education and AC; the control group received AC. AC allowed the participants to choose between two fruits and/or vegetables.
Outcome Measures and Analysis
Variables measured included fruit/vegetable preference, consumption, reciprocal determinism, self-efficacy, behavioral capability, and modeling from SCT. Paired/independent t-tests, chi-square analyses were employed to compare groups.
Eighty-nine students participated in the study (intervention=46, control=43): 57% female and 43% males; mean age 7.64 (SD 0.48). No change was observed in fruit consumption. Vegetable consumption and preference differed after intervention between groups: for consumption (self-efficacy), 6.5% increase for intervention and 4.5% decrease for control (p= .01); for preference, 4.3% increase for intervention and 2.4% decrease for control (p=.57). Similarly, knowledge (behavior capability) of fruit/vegetables increased 4.3% in intervention, but decreased 2.4% in control (p=.14). All students were engaged within AC even if they did not take a fruit/vegetable that day.
Conclusions and Implications
Nutrition education combined with AC had a positive impact on knowledge and vegetable consumption/preference in the intervention group. A longer invention duration with multiple locations may grow the study validity for innovative program to be implemented throughout school districts nationwide.
Jennifer Layne Acupuncture and Wellness; ShopRite of Rochelle Park, NJ
© 2017 Published by Elsevier Inc.