Relationship between nutrition education and fruit and vegetable consumption in a sample of students at CMU

Alexandra Verloove, Phame Camarena, Najat Yehia

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

Abstract

The 2015-2020 U.S. Dietary Guidelines encourage Americans to consume more fruits and vegetables as part of a healthy eating pattern to reduce the risk of chronic disease. However, in Michigan, recent data indicated that only 50.2% and 63.6% of young adults ages 18-24 years reported consuming fruit and vegetable one or more times per day, respectively, in 2015. Accordingly, this study aimed to assess whether nutrition education can improve fruit and vegetable consumption among a sample of CMU students. Two groups of students took part in this study in fall 2016. The first group consisted of 170 students (74% female) recruited from a nutrition class and the other group consisted of 175 students (64.6% female) recruited from a non-Science major class. Both groups filled out an online survey via SurveyMonkey at the beginning of the semester and end of the semester. The survey included questions related to students’ demographic characteristics, height, weight, fruit and vegetable (F/V) frequency of intake (using Block Fruit-Vegetable-Fiber Screener), barriers to eating fruits and vegetables, and nutrition knowledge. Results indicated that there were no significant differences in the frequency of daily consumption of F/V among students in the nutrition class compared to those students in the non-Science class at the beginning of the semester and end of the semester. However, students in the nutrition class reported more frequent consumption of F/V compared to those students in the non-Science class at baseline. Female and male students in the nutrition class reported consuming 4.22 and 3.26 servings of F/V per day at the beginning of the semester compared to 4.11 and 3.08 at the end of the semester, respectively. Although there was no significant association between nutrition knowledge and increased frequency of daily consumption of F/V, students with higher fruit and vegetable intake also had higher nutrition scores on the nutrition knowledge questionnaire. Students reported few barriers regarding F/V consumption such as “fruits and vegetables are expensive, fruits and vegetables do not taste good, and people I live with do not eat fruits and vegetables.” Overall, results of this pilot study suggest that nutrition knowledge did not lead to an increase in the frequency of daily consumption of F/V among students despite the increase in their nutrition knowledge.
Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - Apr 19 2017
EventThe 24th Annual Student Research and Creative Endeavors Exhibition (SRCEE) - Finch Fieldhouse, CMU
Duration: Apr 19 2017Apr 19 2017

Other

OtherThe 24th Annual Student Research and Creative Endeavors Exhibition (SRCEE)
Period04/19/1704/19/17

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