Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Kids eat more fruits, vegetables when schools offer salad bar

10.12.2007
A new UCLA study has found that elementary schools can significantly increase the frequency of fruit and vegetable consumption among low-income students by providing a lunch salad bar.
The findings, published in the December issue of the international peer-reviewed journal Public Health Nutrition, show that the frequency of students' fruit and vegetable consumption increased significantly — from 2.97 to 4.09 times daily — after a salad bar was introduced. In addition, students' mean daily intake of energy, cholesterol, saturated fat and total fat declined considerably.

"One of the major contributing factors to the high rate of overweight children in the United States is that they do not consume the daily recommended servings of fruits and vegetables," said lead author Dr. Wendy Slusser, assistant professor of pediatrics at Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA and the UCLA School of Public Health. "Increasing the availability and accessibility to healthy foods is one way to improve children's diets. In turn, this sets up opportunities for kids to have repeated exposure to healthy food and positively impact their choices."

The UCLA pilot study was conducted at three Los Angeles Unified School District elementary schools participating in the salad bar program and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's reimbursable lunch program. Study participants included 337 children in grades 2 through 5. Children were interviewed using a 24-hour food-recall questionnaire, both before and after the salad bar intervention — in 1998 and 2000, respectively.

The study was offered in conjunction with a nutritional education component, including a school assembly to teach children about the proper etiquette of serving themselves salad and picking a well-balanced lunch, as well as an artwork project and visits to farmers markets or a farm. The salad bar program was developed together by LAUSD Food Services and Occidental College in Los Angeles.

"The results are clear — if we provide fresh fruits and vegetables in kid-friendly ways, we will increase consumption," said school board member Marlene Canter. "I am excited to see that our efforts to find new and creative ways to improve our students' nutrition and help reduce obesity are working."

Since the study, the LAUSD school board voted positively on a 2003 obesity-prevention motion that includes recommending fruit and vegetable bars as a modification of the hot lunch program.

An important source of nutrition, fruits and vegetables help with weight management and can also be beneficial in reducing the risk of certain cancers, heart disease, stroke and Type 2 diabetes. Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables can improve health by increasing amounts of vitamin C, phytonutrients, potassium and fiber in the body and displacing energy-dense fatty foods.

The U.S.D.A. has reported that only 36.4 percent of U.S. children between the ages of 2 and 19 eat the recommended three to five servings of vegetables per day, and only 26 percent eat the two to four recommended daily servings of fruit.

"The salad bar program showed us that children will indeed eat more fruits and vegetables if offered in an appetizing and accessible manner," Slusser said. "Future studies should evaluate parent education with school lunch menu changes, as well as why boys are less likely to eat from the salad bar at lunch than girls."

The study was funded by the Joseph Drown Foundation and the Center for Advanced Studies in Nutrition and Social Marketing at the University of California, Davis.

In addition to Slusser, UCLA co-authors include William G. Cumberland, Ben L. Browdy, Linda Lang and Charlotte Neumann.

Amy Albin | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mednet.ucla.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Drone vs. truck deliveries: Which create less carbon pollution?
31.05.2017 | University of Washington

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersensitive through quantum entanglement

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under real ambient pressure conditions

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Mice provide insight into genetics of autism spectrum disorders

28.06.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>