Date of Award:

6-1-2015

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Sciences

Advisor/Chair:

Heidi Wengreen

Abstract

Several school-based interventions aimed at increasing fruit and vegetables (FV) intake among children have demonstrated success in short-term interventions. The Fit Game is a school-based intervention aimed at encouraging children to consume increasing amounts of FV during a game, which is a narrative. Just as children are being encouraged to eat FV at school, so is it equally important for them to eat FV at home. Parents strongly influence the amount of FV children consume at home. The aim of this thesis is to examine associations between factors that influence consumption of fruits and vegetables at and away from school among children who are participating in a schoolbased intervention, which has been shown to increase fruit and vegetable consumption at school. Associations between factors of the home environment and FV intake of children at and away from school are also explored. The study population was 37 parent-child pairs who participated in the Fit Game intervention conducted at one elementary school in 2013 (n = 252).

This study showed that there was an increase in FV intake of children at school during the period they played the Fit Game; however there was no change in fruit and vegetable intake away from school during that same period of time. In addition, though parents and children’s intake of FV were correlated, parents did not change their FV intake during the period of time their child participated in the Fit Game at school. There was no significance between children’s intake and the factors in the home environment including family meals, FV accessibility and availability as well as parental knowledge. This study used rigorous methods to assess dietary intake. It is, however, important that this study is replicated with a larger sample that is more diverse.

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Nutrition Commons

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