Effect of a school-based nutrition education program on adolescents’ nutrition-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviour in rural areas of China
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Objectives This study aimed at examining the effect of the nutrition education program on adolescents’ knowledge, attitudes and behaviour in relation to nutrition in rural China. Methods A cluster-randomised intervention trial design was employed. Two middle schools were randomly selected and assigned to the school conducting nutrition education (NE school), or to the Control school, in Mi Yun County, Beijing. From each school 65 seventh-grade students were randomly selected to participate in the study. Nutrition-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviour were measured at pre- and post-intervention surveys with the same instrument. The nutrition education lasted for 6 months. Results After the intervention, more students in NE school knew the main function of dairy products and vegetables, which micronutrient is rich in dairy products and beans, and in meat, and the symptom of food poisoning, than those in Control school. The rate of students who thought nutrition is very important to health, and foods with an expired date should be thrown away in NE school was higher than that in Control school (93.8 vs. 80.3 and 92.3 vs. 78.7 %, respectively). The rate of students who ate vegetables and breakfast everyday in NE school was higher than that in Control school (96.9 vs. 80.3, and 89.2 vs. 75.4 %, respectively). (p < 0.05). Conclusions This nutrition education programme is effective in improving adolescents’ knowledge, attitudes, and behaviour in relation to nutrition; therefore, the nutrition education with interactive and innovative intervention components is strongly recommended for future nutrition promotion programmes for adolescents.
Environmental Health and Preventive Medicine
Food Nutritional Balance