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J Am Diet Assoc. 2002 Dec;102(12):1773-8.

Children's dietary fat intake and fat practices vary by meal and day.

Author information

  • 1Children's Nutrition Research Center, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA. kcullen@bcm.tmc.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This research examined the relationship between the dietary fat intake and fat practices of children by meal, day of week, and weekend day vs weekday.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

SUBJECTS/SETTING:

Fourth- to sixth-grade students (n = 520; 25% African-American, 32% white, 33% Mexican-American, 10% Asian/other, 58% girls) attending 8 parochial schools in Houston, Texas.

MAIN MEASURES:

Students completed daily food records in the classroom for 7 days. Food records were hand-coded for high-fat (eg, frying foods, adding fat) and low-fat (eg, removing meat fat, drinking low-fat milk) practices, and percent energy from fat.

STATISTICAL ANALYSES:

Descriptive statistics, Spearman correlation coefficients, and analysis of variance on fat intake and fat practices by demographic variables and weekend vs weekday.

RESULTS:

Students consumed 36% of total energy from fat, reported 0.59 low-fat practices, and 6.3 high-fat practices per day. Only 13% consumed 30% or less energy from fat. Significant correlations were found between percent energy from fat and high-fat practices and low-fat practices (r = 0.27, P < .001 and r = -0.15, P < .01, respectively).

APPLICATIONS/CONCLUSIONS:

Intervention programs targeting children's dietary fat behaviors should include teaching skills that enable children to ask for low-fat foods like fruit, vegetables, low-fat snacks and dairy foods. These foods should be made available in the home to encourage children to practice low-fat dietary behaviors, which may differ depending on meal, day, and meal source.

PMID:
12487539
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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