Master of Science (MS)
The objective of the study was to evaluate a multi-component school-based nutrition intervention program, Smart Bodies, to see if the curriculum increased nutrition knowledge, increased self-reported intakes of fruits and vegetables, and improved opinions, outcome expectations, social norms, and self-efficacy related to fruit and vegetables among elementary school students. The Smart Bodies curriculum was conducted in the classrooms of eighteen public schools in south Louisiana over a twelve-week period and included nutrition related games, videos, books and classroom activity tracking charts. Six hundred forty-one 4th and 5th grade students were included in the sample. A survey based on the Social Cognitive Theory was administered to evaluate nutrition knowledge, fruit and vegetable intake, opinions, self-efficacy, social norms and outcome expectations related to fruit and vegetable consumption both before and after the intervention. A factor analysis was run on each section to determine the number and nature of underlying factors affecting the relationship between each section of variables. Least square means tests using a mixed-model ANOVA were conducted on the knowledge section and on each factor. The study results showed an increase in self-reported intakes of fruit and fruit juice (p=0.01) and a tendency towards an increase in nutrition knowledge in children who participated in the curriculum (p=0.07). The study also found that the students who completed the program had a better self-efficacy related to F&V (p=0.01) and a tendency for more positive opinions (p=0.07) about F&V consumption than those students who did not participate in the intervention. The results suggest that a multi-component, school-based nutrition intervention program may increase fruit and vegetable intakes and improve self-efficacy to consume fruits and vegetables.
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Silverman, Linda, "Evaluating the effects of a multi-component school-based nutrition intervention program in elementary school students" (2007). LSU Master's Theses. 3096.