The eating behavior of school-age children can be improved by school-based nutrition interventions, based on the study conducted by the Department of Science and Technology and Food and Research Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI).
DOST Secretary Fortunato “Boy” T. de la Peña cited the results of the FNRI study during his weekly report on Friday, Oct. 15.
“They have proven that school-based nutrition interventions can improve the eating behavior of school-age children and this is through a study that was done by the researchers and will soon appear as a journal article entitled, “Do school-based nutrition interventions improve the eating behavior of school-age children?”,” he said.
He said the research output will be coming out in the publication entitled the “Nutrition Research Practice Journal.”
Involved in the study were school children aged seven to nine enrolled in selected public elementary schools in the country, and their mothers or caregivers.
“A complete package of nutrition intervention composed of feeding and nutrition classes was pilot tested in selected schools to determine changes in nutrition attitude and behavior, and food intake of schoolchildren after the intervention,” de la Peña said.
“The results showed improved mean attitude scores of children and perceived better behavior of children was reported by mothers in terms of increased intake of milk and vegetables and decreased consumption of sugar.”
The DOST chief said the improvements were supported by actual food intake of children obtained from 24-hour food recall.
He said following the study findings, the research team recommended that intervention package be adopted in public elementary schools in the country.
“Based from the study findings in which the intervention package resulted in a substantial improvement in children’s behavior and actual food intake, the adoption of intervention package in public elementary school is being recommended.”