Poster Topical Area: Nutrition Education and Behavioral Sciences

Location: Auditorium

Poster Board Number: 222

P18-054 - Evaluation of a School-Based Fruit and Vegetable Intervention Using a Digital Photography Method

Sunday, Jun 10
8:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Objective: The primary objective is to use digital photography of food to assess if a policy, systems, and environment (PSE) intervention increases the amount and variety of fruits and vegetables consumed at lunch by low-income 5th graders.

Design and Methods: This quasi-experimental study used digital photographs of the students' trays pre and post meal both before and after the PSE intervention to analyze the consumption and variety of fruits and vegetables. The sample consisted of low-income 5thgrade students in the Providence School District, treatment school, n=75, control school, n=55. Consumption differences were assessed using the Mann-Whitney U for between group changes and Wilcoxon signed-rank test for within groups. Pearson chi-square compared variety of fruits and vegetables between groups<./p>

There was a difference between groups for cups of fruit (p<0.01) with the treatment group decreasing (M=0.12, SD=0.46, p= 0.02) and the control group increasing (M=0.12, SD=0.49, p=0.20). There were no differences between (p=0.13) or within groups (treatment school; p=0.41, control school; p=0.71) for vegetable consumption. There was a statistically significant difference in variety of vegetables at baseline; 49% selected one or two vegetables at the treatment school and 6.7% of students selected one or two in the control school (X 2=30.7, p<0.001). There was no change in variety of fruits or variety of vegetables from baseline to follow-up within or between groups<./p>

Conclusion: Although data suggested a negative effect of the intervention on fruit consumption with no effect on vegetable consumption or variety of fruits and vegetables chosen at the lunch meal, the sample size was small and fruit options varied between schools and time periods. Future research should explore changes in the eating environment to increase availability of preferred fruit and vegetable options.

Funding Source: URI SNAP Education Grant

CoAuthors: Geoffrey Greene, PhD, RD, LDN – University of Rhode Island; Linda Sebelia, MA, MS, RDN – University of Rhode Island; Cathy English, PhD, RD, LDN – University of Rhode Island; Adam Moore, PhD – University of Rhode Island

Natalie R. Weisfeld

Graduate Assistant
URI SNAP Education
Providence, Rhode Island