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Am J Health Promot. 1997 May-Jun;11(5):315-22.

Development of a school-based nutrition intervention for high school students: Gimme 5.

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  • 1Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To describe a 4-year intervention targeting fruit/vegetable consumption by high school students.

DESIGN:

This is a cohort study involving six pairs of schools (n = 12) matched on gender, race, enrollment, and location with schools randomly assigned within pairs to intervention or control conditions.

SETTING:

Twelve Archdiocese of New Orleans high schools.

SUBJECTS:

Cohort was defined as students (n = 2339) who were ninth-graders in the 1993-94 school year who provided baseline data.

INTERVENTION:

Four components of the intervention are: (1) school-wide media-marketing campaign, (2) school-wide meal and snack modification, (3) classroom workshops and supplementary subject matter activities, and (4) parental involvement.

MEASURES:

Focus groups were conducted for target population input and program development. Process evaluation included student feedback on media-marketing intervention materials and activities reported here. Process measures also included school meal participation, student characteristics, and verification of intervention activities.

RESULTS:

Focus groups identified barriers to increased consumption of fruit and vegetables as lack of availability, variety, and inconsistency in taste. Student attitudes were favorable regarding a school program to improve diet and parental involvement. Low consumption of fruits/vegetables was reported. After a 2-month school-wide program introduction utilizing various media-marketing materials and activities, 93% of students were aware of the program and 96% could identify the healthy eating message.

CONCLUSIONS:

Program development can be guided and enriched by student input via focus groups. Media-marketing activities effectively delivered health messages and attracted students' attention. Materials and activities used were acceptable channels for increasing awareness, positive attitudes, and knowledge about fruits/vegetables.

PMID:
10167365
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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