Correlates of fruit, vegetable, soft drink, and snack intake among adolescents: the ESSENS study
Background: Identifying modifiable correlates of dietary behaviors is of utmost importance for the promotion of healthy dietary behaviors.
Objective: This study explores individual, home, and school/neighborhood environmental correlates of dietary behaviors (intake of fruits, vegetables, soft drinks, and unhealthy snacks) among adolescents.
Methods: In total, 742 adolescents with a mean age of 13.6 (SD=0.3) were included in this cross-sectional study conducted in 11 secondary schools located in the eastern part of Norway. A web-based questionnaire was used to collect data. Univariable and multivariable linear regression analyses were used to explore factors associated with the dietary behaviors included.
Results: A higher frequency of food/drink purchase in the school canteen was related to a higher consumption of soft drinks and snacks. A higher frequency of food/drink purchase in shops around schools during break or recess was related to a higher consumption of snacks. A higher frequency of food/drink purchase in shops around the neighborhood on the way to and from school was related to a higher consumption of soft drinks. Perceived parental modeling and perceived accessibility at home were found to be positively associated with all dietary behaviors. Perceived parental rules were inversely associated with soft drink and snack consumption; self-efficacy related to healthy eating was positively associated with fruit and vegetable consumption. Other included school and neighborhood environmental correlates were not associated with the dietary behaviors.
Conclusions: There is a need to address the food purchasing behavior of the adolescents using different approaches. The findings also highlight the important role of parents and the home environment for healthy and unhealthy dietary behaviors of adolescents.
Keywords: correlates; dietary behaviors; home; school; neighborhood; environment
(Published: 20 September 2016)
Citation: Food & Nutrition Research 2016, 60: 32512 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/fnr.v60.32512
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
Authors retain copyright of their work, with first publication rights granted to SNF Swedish Nutrition Foundation.