Simple Suppers: Nutrition Education Program
Keywords:Simple Suppers: Parent Self-Efficacy
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Human Sciences Honors Theses; 2013
In order to reverse current trends in childhood obesity, early intervention and engagement of parents are essential. The objective of this 10 month study was to test potential efficacy of a nutrition education and cooking program aimed at teaching parents and their preschool children positive eating behaviors. We hypothesized that participating parents would increase their self-efficacy to engage in positive parenting practices that promote a healthy diet in their children. The curriculum was based on the 2010 Dietary Guidelines and consisted of 10X90 min programs delivered over the dinner hour on a monthly basis in a daycare located in a low-income urban neighborhood. Session components included: nutrition education, family meal prep, group meal, take-home educational materials. The evaluation plan included a pre-, mid-, and post-assessment of 1) parent self-efficacy to engage in healthful practices that promote healthy food choices and eating behaviors in their children (3-point Likert scale) and 2) frequency of family meals prepared and eaten at home (0-7 times per week). Eleven families enrolled in the study and ten completed the program. Linear regression models were developed for each outcome variable. Results significant at p<0.05. Parents were more confident that they could plan one vegetable for lunch and supper (baseline to final, p=0.02), encourage their child to eat low fat food (baseline to final, p=0.02), introduce a new vegetable on a monthly basis (baseline to final, p=0.007), introduce a new vegetable weekly (baseline to midway, p=0.003), keep cut up vegetables in the refrigerator (baseline to final, p=0.05), and bake meats instead of frying them (baseline to midway, p=0.02). Between the baseline and final time points, parents were also more confident that they could have their child help prepare meals (p=0.03). Finally, from baseline to the final time point, there was an increase in the number of dinners each week that families prepared at home (p=0.003). An innovative nutrition education and cooking class engaged the target audience of parents and preschool-aged children and improved parent confidence level to engage in certain positive parent practices related to improved child diet.
Academic Major: Human Nutrition