Changing food habits in children and adolescents Experiences from intervention studies
Koivisto Hursti, Ulla-Kaisa
- Publisher: Co-Action Publishing
Food & Nutrition Research
(issn: 1654-661X, eissn: 1654-6628)
The purpose of this review was to assess the current state of knowledge concerning interventions aimed at food habit change in children and adolescents and to identify implications for further practice and research. The review was restricted to school- or community-based studies conducted with an experimental or quasi-experimental design during the 1980's and early 1990's. A number of intervention programmes was identified, of which most were based on the Social Learning Model. The majority of programmes were aimed at behaviour change, but nutrition knowledge and attitudes towards healthy foods were targeted in some programmes. Most studies reported only modest changes in the outcome measures, and only three reported maintenance of intervention effects. The lack of maintenance of effects may be due to the use of intervention periods of short duration. Even moderate changes in dietary risk factors for CVD may be beneficial if maintained through long periods. Thus, future research should concentrate on how the effects of an intervention programme can be maintained, in addition to studying the outcomes immediately after the intervention.