Food and drink purchasing habits out of school at lunchtime

a national survey of secondary school pupils in Scotland

Jennie I Macdiarmid (Corresponding Author), Wendy J Mills, Lindsey F Masson, Leone C A Craig, Catherine Bromley, Geraldine McNeill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Background
Food and drink purchasing habits of pupils out of school at lunchtime may be contributing to poor dietary intakes and overweight and obesity. The aim of this study was to identify the places from which purchases were made, types of food and drinks purchased and, the reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school.

Methods
A survey of the food and drinks purchasing habits of secondary school pupils (11-16 yrs) out of school at lunchtime was conducted in Scotland in 2010. A face-to-face interview and a self-completion questionnaire was designed to identify the food outlets used at lunchtime, types of food and drinks purchased and pupils’ reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. Height and weight were measured and BMI centiles used to classify pupils as normal weight, overweight or obese. Results were compared by age group, sex, BMI group and level of socio-economic deprivation.

Results
Of the 612 pupils who completed the survey, 97 % reported having access to places selling food or drinks out of school at lunchtime, and of these 63 % made purchases. A higher proportion of pupils from more deprived areas reported purchasing food or drinks out of school, but the proportion making purchases did not differ significantly by sex or BMI group. Supermarkets were the outlets from which pupils reported most often making purchases, with fewer purchasing food or drinks from fast food takeaways, and this did not differ significantly by socio-economic deprivation. Reasons for making purchases included availability of preferred food and drinks, some of which are restricted for sale in schools, and social reasons, such as wanting to be with friends. Sandwiches and non-diet soft drinks were items most commonly purchased, followed by confectionery and diet soft drinks. However, less than 10 % of all the secondary school pupils reported purchasing these foods every day.

Conclusions
Supermarkets, not just fast food outlets, should be considered when developing strategies to improve the dietary habits of pupils at lunchtime. The importance of food preferences and social reasons for purchasing food and drinks need to be acknowledged and integrated in future interventions.
Original languageEnglish
Article number98
JournalThe International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Aug 2015

Fingerprint

Lunch
Scotland
Pupil
Habits
Food
Fast Foods
Carbonated Beverages
Surveys and Questionnaires
Economics
Weights and Measures
Food Preferences
Feeding Behavior
Age Groups
Obesity

Keywords

  • school
  • children
  • lunchtime
  • food purchase
  • supermarkets
  • socioeconomic deprivation

Cite this

@article{de50269967a14d669c89d648228da6b2,
title = "Food and drink purchasing habits out of school at lunchtime: a national survey of secondary school pupils in Scotland",
abstract = "BackgroundFood and drink purchasing habits of pupils out of school at lunchtime may be contributing to poor dietary intakes and overweight and obesity. The aim of this study was to identify the places from which purchases were made, types of food and drinks purchased and, the reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. MethodsA survey of the food and drinks purchasing habits of secondary school pupils (11-16 yrs) out of school at lunchtime was conducted in Scotland in 2010. A face-to-face interview and a self-completion questionnaire was designed to identify the food outlets used at lunchtime, types of food and drinks purchased and pupils’ reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. Height and weight were measured and BMI centiles used to classify pupils as normal weight, overweight or obese. Results were compared by age group, sex, BMI group and level of socio-economic deprivation. ResultsOf the 612 pupils who completed the survey, 97 {\%} reported having access to places selling food or drinks out of school at lunchtime, and of these 63 {\%} made purchases. A higher proportion of pupils from more deprived areas reported purchasing food or drinks out of school, but the proportion making purchases did not differ significantly by sex or BMI group. Supermarkets were the outlets from which pupils reported most often making purchases, with fewer purchasing food or drinks from fast food takeaways, and this did not differ significantly by socio-economic deprivation. Reasons for making purchases included availability of preferred food and drinks, some of which are restricted for sale in schools, and social reasons, such as wanting to be with friends. Sandwiches and non-diet soft drinks were items most commonly purchased, followed by confectionery and diet soft drinks. However, less than 10 {\%} of all the secondary school pupils reported purchasing these foods every day. ConclusionsSupermarkets, not just fast food outlets, should be considered when developing strategies to improve the dietary habits of pupils at lunchtime. The importance of food preferences and social reasons for purchasing food and drinks need to be acknowledged and integrated in future interventions.",
keywords = "school, children, lunchtime, food purchase, supermarkets, socioeconomic deprivation",
author = "Macdiarmid, {Jennie I} and Mills, {Wendy J} and Masson, {Lindsey F} and Craig, {Leone C A} and Catherine Bromley and Geraldine McNeill",
note = "Acknowledgements The survey was funded by the Food Standards Agency in Scotland (Contract FS424019 to the University of Aberdeen (2010)). The funders specified the design of the survey and reviewed the survey but played no role in the collection or analysis of the data or in the drafting and critical review of the manuscript. JIM, LCAC and GM acknowledge personal support from the RESAS, Scottish Government.",
year = "2015",
month = "8",
day = "4",
doi = "10.1186/s12966-015-0259-4",
language = "English",
volume = "12",
journal = "The International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity",
issn = "1479-5868",
publisher = "BioMed Central",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Food and drink purchasing habits out of school at lunchtime

T2 - a national survey of secondary school pupils in Scotland

AU - Macdiarmid, Jennie I

AU - Mills, Wendy J

AU - Masson, Lindsey F

AU - Craig, Leone C A

AU - Bromley, Catherine

AU - McNeill, Geraldine

N1 - Acknowledgements The survey was funded by the Food Standards Agency in Scotland (Contract FS424019 to the University of Aberdeen (2010)). The funders specified the design of the survey and reviewed the survey but played no role in the collection or analysis of the data or in the drafting and critical review of the manuscript. JIM, LCAC and GM acknowledge personal support from the RESAS, Scottish Government.

PY - 2015/8/4

Y1 - 2015/8/4

N2 - BackgroundFood and drink purchasing habits of pupils out of school at lunchtime may be contributing to poor dietary intakes and overweight and obesity. The aim of this study was to identify the places from which purchases were made, types of food and drinks purchased and, the reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. MethodsA survey of the food and drinks purchasing habits of secondary school pupils (11-16 yrs) out of school at lunchtime was conducted in Scotland in 2010. A face-to-face interview and a self-completion questionnaire was designed to identify the food outlets used at lunchtime, types of food and drinks purchased and pupils’ reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. Height and weight were measured and BMI centiles used to classify pupils as normal weight, overweight or obese. Results were compared by age group, sex, BMI group and level of socio-economic deprivation. ResultsOf the 612 pupils who completed the survey, 97 % reported having access to places selling food or drinks out of school at lunchtime, and of these 63 % made purchases. A higher proportion of pupils from more deprived areas reported purchasing food or drinks out of school, but the proportion making purchases did not differ significantly by sex or BMI group. Supermarkets were the outlets from which pupils reported most often making purchases, with fewer purchasing food or drinks from fast food takeaways, and this did not differ significantly by socio-economic deprivation. Reasons for making purchases included availability of preferred food and drinks, some of which are restricted for sale in schools, and social reasons, such as wanting to be with friends. Sandwiches and non-diet soft drinks were items most commonly purchased, followed by confectionery and diet soft drinks. However, less than 10 % of all the secondary school pupils reported purchasing these foods every day. ConclusionsSupermarkets, not just fast food outlets, should be considered when developing strategies to improve the dietary habits of pupils at lunchtime. The importance of food preferences and social reasons for purchasing food and drinks need to be acknowledged and integrated in future interventions.

AB - BackgroundFood and drink purchasing habits of pupils out of school at lunchtime may be contributing to poor dietary intakes and overweight and obesity. The aim of this study was to identify the places from which purchases were made, types of food and drinks purchased and, the reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. MethodsA survey of the food and drinks purchasing habits of secondary school pupils (11-16 yrs) out of school at lunchtime was conducted in Scotland in 2010. A face-to-face interview and a self-completion questionnaire was designed to identify the food outlets used at lunchtime, types of food and drinks purchased and pupils’ reasons for purchasing food or drinks out of school. Height and weight were measured and BMI centiles used to classify pupils as normal weight, overweight or obese. Results were compared by age group, sex, BMI group and level of socio-economic deprivation. ResultsOf the 612 pupils who completed the survey, 97 % reported having access to places selling food or drinks out of school at lunchtime, and of these 63 % made purchases. A higher proportion of pupils from more deprived areas reported purchasing food or drinks out of school, but the proportion making purchases did not differ significantly by sex or BMI group. Supermarkets were the outlets from which pupils reported most often making purchases, with fewer purchasing food or drinks from fast food takeaways, and this did not differ significantly by socio-economic deprivation. Reasons for making purchases included availability of preferred food and drinks, some of which are restricted for sale in schools, and social reasons, such as wanting to be with friends. Sandwiches and non-diet soft drinks were items most commonly purchased, followed by confectionery and diet soft drinks. However, less than 10 % of all the secondary school pupils reported purchasing these foods every day. ConclusionsSupermarkets, not just fast food outlets, should be considered when developing strategies to improve the dietary habits of pupils at lunchtime. The importance of food preferences and social reasons for purchasing food and drinks need to be acknowledged and integrated in future interventions.

KW - school

KW - children

KW - lunchtime

KW - food purchase

KW - supermarkets

KW - socioeconomic deprivation

U2 - 10.1186/s12966-015-0259-4

DO - 10.1186/s12966-015-0259-4

M3 - Article

VL - 12

JO - The International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity

JF - The International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity

SN - 1479-5868

M1 - 98

ER -