A Brief Educational Intervention Increases Knowledge of the Sugar Content of Foods and Drinks but Does Not Decrease Intakes in Scottish Children Aged 10-12 Years

Tania L Griffin, Diane M Jackson, Geraldine McNeill, Lorna S Aucott, Jennie I Macdiarmid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To assess the effectiveness of an educational intervention to improve children's knowledge of the sugar content of food and beverages.

METHODS: Cluster-randomized, controlled trial with 268 children (aged 10-12 years) from 14 primary schools in Aberdeen, Scotland. The intervention group received 2 interactive classroom sessions about sugar. A questionnaire to assess knowledge was completed at baseline and 4, 10, and 34 weeks postintervention. Dietary intake was assessed by food frequency questionnaire at baseline and on weeks 10 and 34.

RESULTS: After the intervention, the intervention group demonstrated greater knowledge of sugar than did the control group (P < .001), which was sustained at week 34 (P < .001). Dietary intakes of sugar did not change postintervention. Pre-intervention children underestimated the sugar content of fruit-based beverages.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Children's knowledge of sugar in food and beverages is limited but can be improved through a simple educational intervention. Further intervention would be needed to encourage a change in dietary intake.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-373
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of nutrition education and behavior
Volume47
Issue number4
Early online date5 May 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2015

Keywords

  • sugar
  • knowledge
  • children
  • cluster-randomized controlled trial

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