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J Cancer Educ. 2015 Dec;30(4):759-65. doi: 10.1007/s13187-014-0773-0.

CaPSCA: Evaluation of a Brief Cancer Prevention Education Programme to Promote Balanced Diet in French School Children.

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B-Research/Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre la Défense, 8 Rue du Capitaine Madon, 75018, Paris, France.
B-Research/Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre la Défense, 8 Rue du Capitaine Madon, 75018, Paris, France.
Académie Nationale de Médecine, Paris, France.


This study examined the effectiveness of two cancer prevention interventions in improving balanced diet among French children aged 12-14 years. The educational techniques used were taken from the taxonomy of behaviour change techniques (BCTs; Abraham & Michie, 2008). Allocation to intervention group (intervention versus control) was randomised at the school-level, the intervention group received two interventions, each of 1-h duration, containing BCTs including advocated attitude, anticipated success/regret, behaviour modelling and barrier identification. Self-reported diet was assessed pre- and post-interventions. The resulting data were coded by a nutritionist and transformed into a novel measure representing the extent to which the participant achieved a balanced diet. Multilevel modelling indicated that, having taken into account the clustered nature of the data, gender and the differing socio-economic status of the participants, balanced diet decreased over time, b=-1.23, t(1830)=-2.79, p=0.005, but this was qualified by a significant interaction effect with intervention, b=1.42, t(1830)=1.98, p=0.047. Separate models for each intervention group revealed that balanced diet decreased over time in the control group, b=-1.25, t(1195)=-2.47, p=0.014, but did not in the intervention group, b=0.19, t(635)=0.44, p=0.66, suggesting a buffering effect of the interventions on balanced diet over time. These findings demonstrate the effectiveness of educational interventions using established behaviour change techniques, to change behaviour.


Adolescents; Balanced diet; Cancer prevention; Education; Health behaviour change; Intervention

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