School-based intervention for nutrition promotion in Mi Yun County, Beijing, China: Does a health-promoting school approach improve parents' knowledge, attitudes and behaviour?
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to assess whether the school-based nutrition programme using the health-promoting school (HPS) framework was effective to improve parents’ knowledge, attitudes and behaviour (KAB) in relation to nutrition in rural Mi Yun County, Beijing. Design/methodology/approach – A cluster-randomised intervention trial design was employed. Two middle schools were randomly selected and assigned to either the intervention school using the HPS framework (HPS School), or to the Control School, in Mi Yun County, Beijing. From each school 65 parents of seventh-grade students were randomly selected to participate in the study. Nutrition-related KAB were measured at pre- and post-intervention surveys with the same instrument. The nutrition intervention last for six months. Findings – The school-based nutrition intervention using the HPS framework was effective in increasing parents’ nutrition knowledge; however, it had no statistical significant impact on improving parents’ attitudes towards nutrition and their eating behaviours. Research limitations/implications – The intervention appeared to be inadequate from the point of view of its impact on parents in terms of content, form and frequency. Practical implications – Future school-based nutrition promotion programmes using the HPS framework should focus more on parents, providing them with a more informative, participative and interactive, and frequent intervention. Originality/value – There is very limited published research focusing on the effect of the school-based nutrition promotion programmes using an HPS framework on parents’ nutrition-related KAB. Although, the improved KAB in relation to nutrition among parents is essential to promote young people’s nutrition and healthy eating behaviours.