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    ABSTRACT: Objective: Obesity is the biggest challenge facing preventive medicine. Calorie-labelling has been suggested as a way of changing the architecture of an 'obesogenic' environment without limiting consumer choice. This study examined the effect of calorie-labelling on sales of food items at catering outlets on a city-centre university campus. Methods: Sales data were collected for two consecutive months in 2013 on three UK university sites (two with calorie-labelling during second month, one control) and analysed with chi-square 'Goodness-of-Fit' tests. A questionnaire seeking consumers' views and use of the calorie-labelling was administered and analysed at group-level with chi-square tests. Results: In intervention vs control sites, total sales of all labelled items fell significantly (-17% vs -2%, p<0.001) for the month with calorie-labelling. Calorie-labelling was associated with substantially reduced sales of high-calorie labelled items, without any compensatory changes in unlabelled alternative items. Among 1166 student- and 646 staff-respondents, 56% reported using the calorie-labels, 97% of them to make lower-calorie choices. More females (63%) than males (40%) reported being influenced by calorie-labels when choosing foods (p=0.01). Conclusions: This study provides evidence, beyond that from single-meal exposures, for the acceptability of meal calorie-labelling and its potential as an effective low-cost anti-obesity measure.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2014 · Preventive Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: To test the appeal of the eatwell week, a nutritionally balanced 7 d menu which satisfies nutritional guidelines of the Food Standards Agency in Scotland; determine the clarity and understanding of the main messages; and gather views on the usability and acceptability of the eatwell week resource format. Focus group discussions with consumers and health professionals. Four locations across the UK. The eatwell week was considered realistic by consumers as it contained foods they recognised and already ate. A preconceived idea had been that there would be more fruit and vegetables and fewer 'treats'. Consumers found the recipes simple and lack of cooking skills was not an apparent barrier. However, the message of 'balance' was poorly understood. Consumers often lacked the knowledge to make informed substitutions in the week. Both the general public and some health professionals felt the menu contained too much carbohydrate. Health professionals felt it was unclear who the eatwell week was intended for and what purpose it served. Use of familiar foods and the provision of simple, easy-to-follow recipes have the potential to overcome some barriers to healthy eating encountered by the general public and encourage improvements in dietary intakes. The eatwell week shows promise as a resource to facilitate implementation of the principles of the eatwell plate and supports government priorities and policies for health.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2013 · Public Health Nutrition
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Being underweight or overweight and obesity at diagnosis may all worsen prognosis in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), although no studies have estimated the prevalence of an unhealthy weight status at diagnosis in large representative samples using contemporary definitions of weight status based on body mass index (BMI) for age. Methods: The present study comprised a retrospective study that aimed to estimate prevalence of being underweight and overweight and obesity at diagnosis for patients with childhood ALL on three successive UK treatment trials: UKALL X (1985-1990; n = 1033), UKALL XI (1990-1997; n = 2031), UKALL 97/99 (1997-2002; n = 898).The BMI for age was used to define weight status with both UK 1990 BMI for age reference data and the Cole-International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) definitions. Results: The prevalence of being underweight was 6% in the most recent trial for which data were available. The prevalence of being overweight and obesity was 35% in the most recent trial when expressed using Cole-IOTF definitions and 41% when expressed relative to UK 1990 reference data. Conclusions: Even with highly conservative estimates, >40% of all UK patients with ALL were underweight, overweight or obese at diagnosis in the most recent trial for which UK data are available (UKALL 97/99, 1997-2002).
    No preview · Article · Jun 2013 · Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics
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