Effectiveness of a Parent Health Report in Increasing Fruit and Vegetable Consumption Among Preschoolers and Kindergarteners

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Abstract

Objective:

To determine the effectiveness of a parent health report on fruit and vegetable consumption among preschoolers and kindergarteners.

Design:

Pre-post open design trial and a randomized controlled trial.

Setting:

A university-sponsored preschool and kindergarten.

Participants:

A total of 63 parents of preschool and kindergarten students participated in the pre-post open design trial and 65 parents participated in the randomized controlled trial.

Intervention:

Parents in intervention groups were given a parent health report providing information about their child's fruit and vegetable intake as well as recommendations for how to increase their child's fruit and vegetable consumption.

Main Outcome Measure:

Change in fruit and vegetable consumption.

Analysis:

Latent growth curve modeling with Bayesian estimation.

Results:

Vegetable consumption increased by 0.3 servings/d in the open trial and 0.65 servings/d in the randomized trial. Fruit consumption did not increase significantly in either study.

Conclusions and Implications:

Results from both an open trial and a randomized controlled trial suggested that the parent health report may be a beneficial tool to increase vegetable consumption in preschoolers and kindergarteners. Increases in vegetable consumption can lead to the establishment of lifelong habits of healthy vegetable intake and decrease risk for chronic diseases.

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