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Healthy whole-grain choices for children and parents: a multi-component school-based pilot intervention

  • Teri L Burgess-Champoux (a1), Hing Wan Chan (a1), Renee Rosen (a1), Len Marquart (a1) and Marla Reicks (a1)...
Abstract</title><sec secType='general' id='abs1'><title>Objective</title><p>The aim of the present study was to pilot-test a school-based intervention designed to increase consumption of whole grains by 4th and 5th grade children.</p></sec><sec secType='general' id='abs2'><title>Design</title><p>This multi-component school-based pilot intervention utilised a quasi-experimental study design (intervention and comparison schools) that consisted of a five-lesson classroom curriculum based on Social Cognitive Theory, school cafeteria menu modifications to increase the availability of whole-grain foods and family-oriented activities. Meal observations of children estimated intake of whole grains at lunch. Children and parents completed questionnaires to assess changes in knowledge, availability, self-efficacy, usual food choice and role modelling.</p></sec><sec secType='general' id='abs3'><title>Setting/sample</title><p>Parent/child pairs from two schools in the Minneapolis metropolitan area; 67 in the intervention and 83 in the comparison school.</p></sec><sec secType='results' id='abs4'><title>Results</title><p>Whole-grain consumption at the lunch meal increased by 1 serving (<span class='italic'>P</span> &lt; 0·0001) and refined-grain consumption decreased by 1 serving for children in the intervention school compared with the comparison school post-intervention (<span class='italic'>P</span> &lt; 0·001). Whole-grain foods were more available in the lunches served to children in the intervention school compared with the comparison school post-intervention (<span class='italic'>P</span> &lt; 0·0001). The ability to identify whole-grain foods by children in both schools increased, with a trend towards a greater increase in the intervention school (<span class='italic'>P</span> = 0·06). Parenting scores for scales for role modelling (<span class='italic'>P</span> &lt; 0·001) and enabling behaviours (<span class='italic'>P</span> &lt; 0·05) were significantly greater for parents in the intervention school compared with the comparison school post-intervention.</p></sec><sec secType='conclusion' id='abs5'><title>Conclusions
AbstractObjective

The aim of the present study was to pilot-test a school-based intervention designed to increase consumption of whole grains by 4th and 5th grade children.

Design

This multi-component school-based pilot intervention utilised a quasi-experimental study design (intervention and comparison schools) that consisted of a five-lesson classroom curriculum based on Social Cognitive Theory, school cafeteria menu modifications to increase the availability of whole-grain foods and family-oriented activities. Meal observations of children estimated intake of whole grains at lunch. Children and parents completed questionnaires to assess changes in knowledge, availability, self-efficacy, usual food choice and role modelling.

Setting/sample

Parent/child pairs from two schools in the Minneapolis metropolitan area; 67 in the intervention and 83 in the comparison school.

Results

Whole-grain consumption at the lunch meal increased by 1 serving (P < 0·0001) and refined-grain consumption decreased by 1 serving for children in the intervention school compared with the comparison school post-intervention (P < 0·001). Whole-grain foods were more available in the lunches served to children in the intervention school compared with the comparison school post-intervention (P < 0·0001). The ability to identify whole-grain foods by children in both schools increased, with a trend towards a greater increase in the intervention school (P = 0·06). Parenting scores for scales for role modelling (P < 0·001) and enabling behaviours (P < 0·05) were significantly greater for parents in the intervention school compared with the comparison school post-intervention.

Conclusions

The multi-component school-based programme implemented in the current study successfully increased the intake of whole-grain foods by children.

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Email mreicks@umn.edu
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Public Health Nutrition
  • ISSN: 1368-9800
  • EISSN: 1475-2727
  • URL: /core/journals/public-health-nutrition
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