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J Am Diet Assoc. 1993 Nov;93(11):1280-4.

Food pattern, diet quality, and related characteristics of schoolchildren in New York State.

Author information

  • 1Division of Nutritional Services, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To examine the food patterns and diet quality of elementary schoolchildren in New York State (outside of New York City) and to determine sociodemographic characteristics correlated with diet quality.

DESIGN:

A nonquantitative 24-hour recall administered to students and a brief questionnaire completed by parents.

SAMPLE:

1,797 second and fifth graders (51% of those asked) in 51 randomly selected schools (46% of those asked) in New York State outside of New York City.

STATISTICAL ANALYSES:

Multiple regression analyses, chi 2, and t tests.

RESULTS:

On the day they were surveyed, 40% of students did not eat vegetables, except for potatoes or tomato sauce; 20% did not eat fruit; 36% ate at least four different types of snack foods, and 16% of fifth graders did not eat breakfast. Children who ate a school lunch ate significantly more dairy foods and fruits and vegetables, and fewer snack-foods than those who brought lunch from home. Fifth graders ate significantly more snack foods and were more likely to skip breakfast than second graders; boys had lower food-group pattern scores than girls; children of lower socioeconomic status had less diverse diets but ate less snack foods than children of higher socioeconomic status; children with single parents were more likely to skip breakfast and to eat fewer vegetables than those with two parents; and children with mothers employed outside the home had less diverse diets than those with mothers at home.

APPLICATIONS/CONCLUSIONS:

The findings indicate that nutrition interventions are clearly needed for this age group and that targeted messages should be based on sociodemographic characteristics.

PMID:
8227878
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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