Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics

Published by Wiley
Online ISSN: 1365-277X
Publications
Article
Background: There is a lack of data in Greece on trends in food intake according to weight status and physical activity (PA), despite the high prevalence of obesity. The present study aimed to examine differences in these parameters among first-grade children from Crete, Greece, over a 15-year period. Methods: Children (aged 5.9-7.6 years) from two representative cross-sectional studies participated during 1992/93 (n = 245) and 2006/07 (n = 257). Estimated 3-day food records were used to assess food consumption and energy-density (ED) [kJ g(-1) (kcal g(-1) )]. Moderate-to-vigorous-PA (MVPA) and cardiorespiratory-fitness were assessed by questionnaires and the 20-m shuttle-run test (20mSRT), respectively. Results: In 2006/07, compared to 1992/93, both sexes had a significantly higher intake of dairy products and snacks (P < 0.001), a lower intake of cereals (P < 0.001) and higher cardiorespiratory fitness levels (P < 0.001). Among girls, fruit/vegetable consumption was higher (P < 0.05), although legume intake was lower (P < 0.005). Among overweight/obese (OW/OB) children, ED significantly decreased (P < 0.05) and the mean consumption of fruits/vegetables was higher (P < 0.001). The percentage of OW/OB boys was significantly higher (P < 0.001); however, MVPA was significant higher in this group compared to 1992/93 (P < 0.001). During the two time-periods, active children in 2006/07 appeared to have a lower ED than active ones in 1992/93 (P < 0.001). Conclusions: Several differences in food intake were observed among first-grade children of Crete between 1992/93 and 2006/07, as characterised by significant increases in the consumption of dairy products and snacks and a decrease in the intake of cereals, among both sexes. Future school-based interventions in this population should emphasise the need to increase fruit/vegetable, unrefined cereal and legume consumption.
 
Article
Background There is lack of data in Greece on the trends in energy and nutrient intake. The present study aimed to examine differences in these parameters among first-grade children of Crete, Greece, between 1992/93 and 2006/07. Methods Children (aged 5.7-7.6years) from two-representative cross-sectional samples participated during 1992/93 (n=245) and 2006/07 (n=257). Nutrient and food intakes were assessed using estimated 3-day-food records. Nutrient intakes were estimated as amounts per 4185 kJ (1000kcal) of energy intake (EI), whereas macronutrients were estimated as percentage of total EI. ResultsBetween 1992/93 and 2006/07, respectively, significant increases (P<0.05) were observed in the intake of energy (boys: 7996 versus 8646kJ; girls: 7265 versus 7963kJ), calcium (boys: 488 versus 587mg; girls: 464 versus 594mg), iron (boys: 5.8 versus 7.3mg; girls: 5.7 versus 7.4mg) and vitamins B-2 (boys: 1.01 versus 1.17mg; girls: 1.0 versus 1.16mg) and B-6 (boys: 0.80 versus 0.87mg; girls: 0.75 versus 0.95mg), for boys and girls, respectively. Among boys, the intake of protein (13.6 versus 14.6% of EI) and total trans fatty acids (TTFA) (0.84 versus 0.99g) was also significantly lower in 1992/93 (P<0.016). Between 1992/93 and 2006/07, total fat (boys: 42.9% versus 42.8%, girls: 42% versus 43.1%) and saturated fat (boys: 15.5% versus 15.4%, girls: 15% versus 15.3%) exceeded the 30-35% and <10% dietary recommendations, respectively, A significantly higher proportion of children in 2006/07, compared to 1992/93, had a higher intake of total energy (>120% of the recommended energy allowance). Conclusions The intake of several macronutrients (protein, TTFA, total and saturated fat) in this sample of children did not meet the recommended intakes in either time period.
 
Article
Group-based interventions for weight loss are popular; however, little is known about how health service groups compare with the commercial sector, from either the participant or the group leader perspective. Currently, health professionals have little guidance on how to deliver effective group interventions. The present study aimed to compare and contrast leaders' and attendees' experiences of health service and commercial weight loss groups, through in-depth interviews and group observations. Purposive sampling, guided by a sampling frame, was employed to identify diverse groups operating in Scotland with differing content, structures and style. Data collection and analysis took place concurrently in accordance with a grounded theory approach. Thirteen semi-structured group observations and in-depth audio-recorded interviews with 11 leaders and 22 attendees were conducted. Identification of themes and the construction of matrices to identify data patterns were guided by the Framework Method for qualitative analysis. Compared to commercial groups, health service 'groups' or 'classes' tended to offer smaller periodic fixed term groups, involving gatekeeper referral systems. Commercial organisations provide a fixed branded package, for 'club' or 'class' members, and most commercial leaders share personal experiences of losing weight. Health service leaders had less opportunity for supervision, peer support or specific training in how to run their groups compared to commercial leaders. Commercial and health service groups differ in access; attendee and leader autonomy; engagement in group processes; and approaches to leadership and training, which could influence weight loss outcomes. Health service groups can provide different group content and experiences, particularly for those with chronic diseases and for populations less likely to attend commercial groups, such as men.
 
Article
the lifestyle of children in developed societies is susceptible to rapid changes and these may affect the nutritional status of children. Reduced physical activity and changes in diet have been proposed as contributing factors to the growth in childhood overweight and obesity. The aim of this study was to assess trends in the food-related behaviour and markers of activity/inactivity in French 9-11 year old children. Three successive surveys (1993, 1995, 1997) were carried out in samples of 1,000 French children, aged 9-11 years. Socio-demographic, anthropometric and food-related parameters were obtained for each child, using standardized questionnaire administered by trained interviewers. previous-day reports of food intake by the child revealed a strong persistence of the traditional French meal structure. Breakfast was eaten by 97% of children. Over the three surveys, an increasing percentage of reported breakfasts contained at least one dairy food, one cereal food, and one fruit or juice (from 11% to 17%). Almost all children had lunch, which occurred at the school cafeteria for one-third of the subjects. The afternoon snack, a traditional meal for French children, was consumed by 86-88% of the samples. Almost all children had dinner (99%), most often at home and in the company of all family members (73-87%). Lunches and dinners were composed of several courses presented in succession, as is usual in France. The foods most preferred by the children were often rich in sugar and/or fat (fried potatoes, ice cream, nut spread, chocolate, cake, etc). The children could list 'healthy foods'competently. They also demonstrated knowledge of terms used in nutrition (e.g. calories, fats) and were aware of possible links between intake of certain substances and disease. In families of higher socio-economic strata (income, education of parents) more time was devoted to sports by the children. Over the three surveys, linear trends indicated more exercise time per week and less television viewing. A high risk of obesity was likely in very sedentary children whose proportion (33%) was stable over the 1993-1997 period. In general the traditional French pattern of eating persisted among these children. Although there were signs of movement towards a more complete breakfast, less television and more exercise in active children, a substantial proportion of children engaged in no sports activity outside school hours. Maintaining appropriate weight is therefore difficult in view of the plentiful supply of food available to children. Inactive children are at high risk of obesity and should be encouraged to adopt a more active lifestyle.
 
Diagram illustrating the prototyping approach used to develop WebDASC.
Overall requirements set forth before the development of the WebDASC The WebDASC should:
WebDASC: search and selection screen showing the available type-in and copy meal search strategies (circled) and the browse by category alternative.
WebDASC: opening screen.
Flowchart of WebDASC.
Article
Background: The present study describes the development and formative evaluation of the Web-based Dietary Assessment Software for Children (WebDASC). WebDASC is part of the OPUS project ('Optimal well-being, development and health for Danish children through a healthy New Nordic Diet') and was intended to measure dietary change resulting from a school-based intervention. Methods: WebDASC was developed as a self-administered tool that could be used by 8-11-year-old children with or without parent's aid. The development of WebDASC followed a prototyping approach: focus groups, informal interviews, literature review, and usability tests preceded its release. Special consideration was given to age-appropriate design issues. Results: In WebDASC an animated armadillo guides respondents through six daily eating occasions and helps them report foods and beverages previously consumed. A database of 1300 food items is available either through category browse or free text search, aided by a spell check application. A type-in format is available for foods not otherwise found through category browse or text search. Amount consumed is estimated by selecting the closest portion size among four different digital images. WebDASC includes internal checks for frequently forgotten foods, and the following features to create motivation: a food-meter displaying cumulative weight of foods reported, a most popular food ranking, and a computer game with a high score list. Conclusions: WebDASC was developed as an intuitive, cost-effective, and engaging method to collect detailed dietary data from 8- to 11-year-old children. Preliminary testing demonstrated that it was well accepted among children.
 
Article
Objective To identify intercountry food intake patterns, we compared the household food availability data collected by the Nationwide Food Consumption Survey (NFCS) in the United States and the Household Budget Surveys (HBS) from 10 European countries that participated in the DAta Food NEtworking (DAFNE) project, namely Belgium, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg, Norway, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom. Methodology The DAFNE project harmonized European household food availability data by clarifying which food items were included in each country's HBS, and then defining comparable food categories among countries. NFCS household data were harmonized with the HBS data by applying the same procedures used in the DAFNE project. Results The results presented in this paper reveal a number of similarities and differences in household food availability among 11 nations. In nearly all countries studied, red meat was available in greater quantities than poultry and seafood combined. Most countries favoured bread and rolls over other types of grain products, had a low to moderate availability of seafood and legumes, had a moderate amount of sugar available, and consumed approximately two-thirds or more of fruits and vegetables in a fresh form. Milk availability tended to be inversely correlated with cheese availability. Only in Mediterranean households was vegetable oil, namely olive oil, the primary type of added lipid available. While the data presented in this paper can do much to improve our understanding of food availability in US and European households, it is important to remember that these data do not include foods purchased and consumed away from home. Applications Despite the limitations of household food availability data, the results presented in this paper can help health professionals develop a more international perspective.
 
Article
The amount of sugars consumed by young adolescents was assessed in 1990 using the same methods as those employed in a similar survey in 1980. The children were the same age (mean 11 years 6 months) and from the same seven schools in both survey. In 1980, 405 children completed the study and 379 in 1990. Information was collected using two 3-day dietary diaries, each child being interviewed by a dietitian upon completion of a diary. The dietitian in this study was calibrated closely with the dietitian who undertook the 1980 study so as to ensure comparable diet evaluation methods. Total sugars consumption was unchanged (117 g/day in 1980, 118 g/day in 1990) but consumption of non-milk extrinsic sugars increased (83 g/day in 1980, 90 g/day in 1990) and milk and intrinsic sugars decreased (34 g/day in 1980, 28 g/day in 1990) between the two surveys. In 1990, non-milk extrinsic sugars contributed 17% to total dietary energy intake, while milk and intrinsic sugars contributed 5%. There was little difference in percent contributions between the sexes, but some social-class trends were apparent. Confectionery provided 33% and soft drinks provided 27% of non-milk extrinsic sugars, these two dietary sources providing 60% of non-milk extrinsic or 46% of total sugars intake. These levels of consumption are considerably higher than those currently recommended in the UK.
 
Demographics*, ,à 
Food group intakes stratified by snacker type*, ,à 
Article
To study dietary intake and body mass index (BMI) patterns among US adults, stratified by snacking patterns. The 1994-1996 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals (CSFII) provided the study sample. Snacking episodes were defined as a 'food and/or beverage break', and subjects were classified as morning, afternoon, evening, multiple or never snackers. Our study included data from 1756 men and 1511 women who provided two nonconsecutive, multiple-pass 24-h dietary recalls. Mean values of each subject's two 24-h recalls were used for analyses, and data were analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) for Windows and SUDAAN. Compared with women, men were more likely to be evening, multiple or never snackers. Male multiple snackers had significantly higher energy intakes than did afternoon and never snackers, whereas female multiple snackers had higher energy intakes than did morning, evening and never snackers. At the same time, male and female multiple snackers had more prudent energy-adjusted intakes of protein, cholesterol, calcium and sodium. Coffee, cola, milk, ice cream and fruits were among the most frequently consumed snacks by men and women. The BMI did not differ significantly across snacker categories. These data indicate that snacking patterns have some effects on energy and nutrient intakes but not on BMI. Snack food choices remain a concern, especially beverages, including those that are sweetened. Vegetables and fruits as snacks should be encouraged.
 
Article
The aim of the study was to test the abilities of the newly created smart card system to track the nutrient contents of foods chosen over several months by individual diners in a school cafeteria. From the food choice and composition of food data sets, an Access database was created encompassing 30 diners (aged 8-11 years), 78 days and eight nutrients. Data were available for a total of 1909 meals. Based upon population mean values the cohort were clearly choosing meals containing higher than the recommended maximum amounts for sugar and lower than the recommended minimum amounts of fibre, iron and vitamin A. Protein and vitamin C contents of meals chosen were well above minimum requirements. Over the 1909 meals, nutrient requirements were met 41% of the time. The system created was very effective at continually monitoring food choices of individual diners over limitless time. The data generated raised questions on the common practice of presenting nutrient intakes as population mean values calculated over a few days. The impact of heavily fortified foods on such studies in general is discussed.
 
Vitamin
Demographics of the study population
Article
  To avoid adverse effects of prolonged bottle use, the recommendations are that full-term babies are introduced to cups from 6 months and discouraged bottles from 12 months old. There are no recommendations for preterm babies. In the UK, the Department of Heath recommends the introduction of vitamin supplements, alongside the transition from formula to cow's milk. The present study aimed to determine age of cup introduction in a group of preterm babies, identify drinks offered from bottles versus cups and the types of cups used, and establish the prevalence and appropriateness of vitamin supplementation.   A validated postal questionnaire was sent to the parents of 369 babies born <34 weeks of gestation at Queen Charlottes Neonatal Unit; 104 sent in 2003 and 265 sent in 2004-2005. The questionnaire was sent when the babies were calculated to be between 12 and 18 months (all ages stated are uncorrected). A separate questionnaire was sent for each baby from multiple pregnancies. Results:  The questionnaire return rate was 46% (n = 169). Length of gestation (P < 0.001), hospital stay (P = 0.009), birth weight (P = 0.002) and maternal age (P < 0.001) were significantly greater and more mothers were of European origin (P = 0.036) for those babies for whom questionnaires were returned compared to nonresponders. Infant gender did not differ. Fifty-seven percent had been introduced to a cup before 12 months, distribution was: 58% (n = 53) of singletons, 54% (n = 37) of twins and 67% (n = 6) of triplets. This rose to 80% before 13 months. Thirteen percent (n = 22) had not started drinking from a cup and 17% (n = 29) only used cups at the time of the questionnaire. Cow's milk had been introduced to 69% (n = 117) of all babies and 32% (n = 54) were still on formula (10 on both and eight were on neither; hence, the figures do not sum to 100%). Cow's milk was drunk from bottles by 56% (n = 95) and formula by 31% (n = 52). A significantly greater proportion of twins and triplets were drinking cow's milk compared to singletons [80% (n = 62) versus 60% (n = 55) P = 0.005] and significantly fewer were drinking formula [22% (n = 17) versus 40% (n = 37) P = 0.012]. Water was the drink most commonly given from a cup (80%) (n = 135) followed by juice, which was given to 64% (n = 108). Juice drinks were given by bottle in 16% (n = 27). Fifty-two percent (n = 88) used a 'spill-proof' cup some of the time. Vitamins were given as recommended in 18% (n = 31), given even though not recommended in 12% (n = 20), not given but recommended in 49% (n = 83) and appropriately not given in 21% (n = 35). A greater percentage of twins and triplets, compared to singletons, were not commenced on vitamins, even though they were no longer drinking formula.   The present study reports baseline data on cup introduction in preterm babies both from singleton and multiple births. The data suggest that education about appropriate bottle drinks, timing of cup introduction, suitable cups and the correct use of vitamin drops is required. However, because the profile of responders differed from nonresponders, these results may not be applicable to all preterm babies.
 
Demographics and body composition measurements
Article
An uncontrolled, pilot study to evaluate feasibility and acceptability of a new community based childhood obesity treatment programme. The mind, exercise, nutrition and diet (MEND) programme was held at a sports centre, twice-weekly, for 3 months. The programme consists of behaviour modification, physical activity and nutrition education. The primary outcome measure was waist circumference. Secondary outcomes were body mass index (BMI), cardiovascular fitness (heart rate, blood pressure and number of steps in 2 min), self-esteem and body composition. BMI of parents was also measured. See http://www.mendprogramme.org. Eleven obese children (7-11 years) and their families were recruited. Mean attendance was 78% (range 63-88%) with one drop out. Waist circumference, cardiovascular fitness and self-esteem were all significantly improved at 3 months and continued to improve at 6 months. BMI was significantly improved at 3 months but lost significance by 6 months. Deuterium studies showed a beneficial trend but were not significant. Of the 17 parents measured, seven were obese (BMI >/= 30) and eight overweight (BMI >/= 25). Although limited by the small number of participants and no control group, the MEND programme was acceptable to families and produced significant improvements in a range of risk factors associated with obesity that persisted over 3 months.
 
Article
Unhealthy eating patterns in childhood can lead to adverse health conditions, particularly obesity. However, debate remains around the precise eating behaviours that lead to these conditions. The present study aimed to address this lack of evidence by reporting on the eating frequency, breakfast consumption and body mass index (BMI, kg m(-2) ) of youth in the UK. A total of 264 (133 boys and 131 girls) participants, aged 10-13years, completed self-report measures of dietary intake via 3-day food/drink diaries (Friday to Sunday). Trained researchers recorded height and weight to calculate the BMI. Diaries were analysed using dietplan 6 nutritional analysis software (Forestfield Software, Horsham, UK) and multivariate linear regression was used to examine any association between breakfast consumption, frequency of eating and BMI. No relationship existed between BMI Z-score, eating frequency and breakfast consumption. However, frequent breakfast consumers had significantly lower mean (SD) BMI Z-scores [0.18(1.06) versus 0.57(1.23)] and higher intakes of iron, calcium and vitamin E than those who did not eat breakfast regularly. Those aged ≥11years consumed breakfast less frequently [0.92(0.20)] and were less likely to eat regularly [4.6(1.4)] than those aged ≤10years. Older boys were the least likely to eat regularly and the least likely to consume breakfast. Promoting the importance of regular eating, particularly breakfast consumption to these boys, may be essential to ensure healthier, long-term eating patterns. Furthermore, the lower breakfast intakes in 11-13-year-olds and higher BMI Z-scores of those who did not eat breakfast regularly should be monitored.
 
Article
Background and aims: Under nutrition has been frequently reported in patients on admission to hospital. Because this is not always detected promptly, screening for nutritional risk on admission has been widely advocated. Although there is no universally accepted 'gold standard' for defining undernutrition, the definition used by McWhirter, J.P. & Pennington, C.R. [(1994) Br. Med. J.308, 945] has been widely used by clinical nutrition specialists. This study aimed to compare the efficacy of two frequently used nutritional risk screening tools in detecting undernutrition according to this definition. Methods: Both the Nutrition Risk Index [Veterans Affairs Total Parenteral Nutrition Co-operative Study Group (1991) N. Engl. J. Med.325, 525] and the Nutrition Risk Score [Reilly H.M. et al. (1995) Clin. Nutr.14, 269] were used to screen for undernutrition in 359 admissions to two acute teaching hospitals in Dublin. Undernutrition was defined as a Body Mass Index below 20 kg m(-2) and a triceps skinfold thickness or mid-arm muscle circumference below the 15th percentile. Comparison of stratification of nutritional risk by the two screening tools was carried out. Results: Both screening tools identified over 40% (Nutrition Risk Index, 44%; Nutrition Risk Score, 46%) of all patients assessed as at nutritional risk on admission. However, one-third of the undernourished patients were classified as at no nutrition risk by the Nutrition Risk Index, while almost one-fifth of those undernourished were classified as at low risk by the Nutrition Risk Score. The degree of nutritional risk differed with the screening tool used, the Nutrition Risk Score classifying 29% of all patients as high risk while the Nutrition Risk Index classified only 5% as in the high risk category. Conclusions: Although a large proportion of patients on admission were classified as being at nutritional risk, the degree of risk was significantly different depending on the screening tool used. Both nutritional risk screening tools evaluated in this study failed to recognize many cases of undernutrition. Evaluation of the efficacy of nutritional screening tools should be promoted as seriously as the development of such tools.
 
Article
Background: In glutaric aciduria type 1 (GA1), dietary treatment with emergency management (EM) is essential to prevent encephalopathic crisis (EC). In the present study, dietary practices were examined in a single UK centre without access to newborn screening. Methods: Twenty GA1 patients (11 males, median age: 10.2 years, range 2.2-24.1 years) were evaluated. Nine presented without EC (median diagnosis age: 1.1 years, range 4 days to 8 years) and 11 with EC (median diagnosis age 10 months, range 6 months to 1.7 years). Dietary treatment, neurological outcome, anthropometry and biochemical/haematological markers were assessed. Results: Diet treatment varied according to age of diagnosis and symptom severity. Four of six pre-encephalopathic children diagnosed before 2 years of age were treated with carnitine, protein restriction (medium l.2 g kg day(-1)) and lysine-free/low tryptophan protein substitute (PS) (medium dose: 1.6 g kg day(-1)). EM consisted of natural protein cessation and glucose polymer with PS delivered via an enteral feeding tube. Older children (>3 years) without EC were given carnitine and protein restriction, and seven of nine EC patients had PS via an enteral feeding tube. Clinical deterioration occurred in two patients without EC; one taking PS and protein restriction (with a second untreatable pathology) and one after protein restriction only. In patients presenting with EC, four died and one had some improvement in movement, with the rest remaining stable but with severe disability. Patients taking PS had better nutritional markers [serum vitamin B(12) (P < 0.001), albumin (P < 0.001), haemoglobin (P < 0.001) and essential plasma amino acids]. Conclusions: Early diagnosis of GA1 before EC is essential because PS and protein restriction with meticulous EM prevents EC. PS also improves nutritional status irrespective of clinical condition.
 
Article
Background: School lunches potentially provide an important source of nutrients for children, although studies have shown that their food choices are not always associated with health benefits. The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of a kitchen-based intervention on intake from school lunches undertaken in 2005. Methods: The three-phase study comprised a pre-intervention observation, the intervention itself and a post-intervention observation. Children aged 12-16 years attending a large, inner-city, secondary school in London were invited to participate. The intervention consisted of small, practical changes to the school menu with the purpose of reducing total and saturated fat and increasing fruit and vegetable consumption. Intake was evaluated using a weighed technique. Results: One hundred and eighty and 198 children participated in the pre- and post-intervention phases, respectively. After the intervention, a significant reduction was observed in mean (SD) intake of total fat [44% (8%) versus 40% (9%) total energy, P < 0.01] and of saturated fat [13% (6%) versus 10% (6%), P < 0.01]. The children also ate significantly more fruit and vegetables [12.0 (10.4) g versus 30.0 (30.5) g total weight, P < 0.001]. However, after the intervention, the mean intakes of total and saturated fat, fruit and vegetables were still significantly below the Caroline Walker Trust guidelines for school lunches. Conclusions: The present study shows that total and saturated fat and fruit and vegetable intake from school lunches can be significantly improved by a short, kitchen-based intervention. Although the benefits were limited, the results support further work in this area.
 
Article
This survey was conducted to assess nutrient intakes and food consumption patterns of adults with coeliac disease who adhere to a strict gluten-free diet. Three-day estimated self-reported food records were used to assess daily intakes of calories, percent daily calories from carbohydrates, dietary fibre, iron, calcium and grain food servings. Volunteers for this survey were recruited through notices placed in coeliac disease support group newsletters, as well as a national magazine for persons with coeliac disease. Forty-seven volunteers met all criteria for participation and returned useable food records. Group mean daily intake of nutrients by gender: Males (n = 8): 2882 calories; 55% carbohydrate; 24.3 g dietary fibre; 14.7 mg iron; 1288.8 mg calcium; 6.6 grain food servings. Females (n = 39): 1900 calories; 52% carbohydrate; 20.2 g dietary fibre; 11.0 mg iron; 884.7 mg calcium; 4.6 grain food servings. Recommended amounts of fibre, iron and calcium were consumed by 46, 44 and 31% of women and 88, 100 and 63% of men, respectively. Nutrition therapy for coeliac disease has centred around food allowed/not allowed on a gluten-free diet. Emphasis also should be placed on the nutritional quality of the gluten-free diet, particularly as it concerns the iron, calcium and fibre consumption of women. The use of the estimated food record as the dietary survey method may have resulted in the under-reporting of energy intake. Due to the small sample size and possible bias of survey participants, the findings of this survey may not be representative of the larger coeliac community.
 
Article
Free nutritionally balanced school lunches are offered to all schoolchildren in basic education in Finland in each school day. Having school lunch on a regular basis has been found to reflect overall eating patterns. However, skipping part of or even the entire lunch is common. The present study investigated the determinants of the regular consumption of a nutritionally balanced school lunch among schoolchildren, with special reference to the role of sense of coherence (SOC). In total, 887 children (457 girls and 424 boys), aged 10-17 years from three municipalities in Eastern Finland, filled in a web-based questionnaire in class during a school day and reported eating patterns, body height and weight and perception of body image. SOC was measured by using the 13-item scale. The statistical analysis was carried out with logistic regression modelling and the chi-squared test. In addition to female gender, frequent shared family meals, perception of body image as appropriate and younger age, SOC was a significant determinant of regularly eating a nutritionally balanced school lunch in the final multivariate modelling. Strong SOC was also associated with more regular meal frequency and health-promoting snack choices. To promote healthy eating patterns among school-aged children, special attention should be paid to children with weak SOC because they may need specific support and encouragement. They might lack sufficient belief in their own capability and/or do not have adequate support from their family to influence their eating and other lifestyle patterns.
 
Diagnostic categories of 158 consecutive patients in the study
Anthropometric data of the sample on admission
Sensitivity and specificity of MAC compared with criterion measures MAC <5th percentile SGA B&C BMI <20 SGA C BMI <18
statistics and intra-class correlation for inter-and intra-observer error for triceps skin fold thickness and mid arm circumference
Article
Mid upper arm anthropometry (MUAA) is often used as a measure of nutritional status to detect changes in body composition. The aim of this study was to investigate the reliability and validity of MUAA including mid arm circumference (MAC) and triceps skin fold thickness (TSFT) to determine the usefulness in clinical practice. We measured MUAA in 158 consecutive admissions along with subjective global assessment (SGA) and body mass index (BMI). Inter- and intra-rater reliability was evaluated in an additional 50 patients. The sensitivity and specificity of MUAA <5th percentile was compared with SGA and BMI. MAC and TSFT had a low sensitivity and a high specificity with low positive predictive values when compared with criterion values which were BMI </=18 and SGA-C. The intra-class correlation coefficient for inter- and intra-rater reliability for MAC were 0.98 (95% CI 0.96-0.98) and 0.99 (95% CI 0.98-0.99) respectively and for TSFT were 0.97 (95% CI 0.91-0.97) and 0.98 (95% CI 0.95-0.98) respectively. MUAA <5th percentile had a high specificity but low sensitivity when compared with indicators of malnutrition. Although MUAA could be reliably measured, it has poor validity and is thus unlikely to be a good predictor of clinical outcome. Percentiles based on healthy populations do not generalize well to the individuals seen in clinical practice.
 
Article
To investigate the normal range of nutrient intakes and food consumption patterns in 18 month old children. 1,026 children resident in South West England, forming part of the Children in Focus (CIF) research cohort. Diet was assessed using a 3 day unweighed dietary record. Nutrient and food intakes were compared with the dietary reference values and with the results of a British survey of preschool children -- the National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS). Intakes of energy and nearly all nutrients were significantly higher in boys than in girls. Intakes of energy were slightly above the estimated average requirements. For most nutrients the mean and median intakes were well above the Reference Nutrient Intakes (RNI). The exceptions were vitamin D, iron and zinc. Nutrient intakes in CIF were very similar to those in the NDNS except for carotene, calcium, vitamin D and iodine, where intakes were considerably higher in CIF, and sugar intake which was lower in CIF. Intakes of most foods were similar in the two surveys. However, consumption of milk, yoghurt and fromage frais and baby foods was higher in CIF, intakes of most fruit and vegetables was somewhat higher, and intakes of savoury snacks and sugar confectionery were lower. In addition, there were differences between the two groups in the types of meat and meat products consumed. These children are unlikely to be deficient in any nutrients, with the possible exceptions of iron, zinc, and vitamin D. The use of vitamin D supplements and the inclusion of iron- and zinc-rich foods in the diets of preschool children should be encouraged. These data will be important in assessing the influence of early diet on subsequent health and development.
 
Article
Background The present study examined dietary messages conveyed in articles and advertising in two popular British women's magazines, Woman and Home and Woman's Own, between 1940 and 1954. MethodsA qualitative analysis of written content was performed, focusing on regularities evident in content, and addressing the construction of the role of women in relation to food provision, as well as assertions for nutritional health. The setting comprised a desk-based study. The study sample encompassed 37 magazines, and yielded a corpus of 569 articles concerned with food or dietary supplements, of which 80.1% were advertisements. ResultsMinistry of Food dietary advice featured prominently up to 1945 and advocated food consumption according to a simple nutrient classification. Advertising and article content also used this classification; advocating consumption of food and supplements on the grounds of energy, growth and protection of health was customary. Providing food to meet nutritional needs was depicted as fundamental to women's war effort and their role as dutiful housewives. Advertising in 1950s magazines also focused on nutritional claims, with a particular emphasis on energy provision. Conclusions These claims reflected the prevailing food policy and scientific understanding of nutritional health. This analysis of food messages in women's magazines provides lessons for contemporary nutrition policy.
 
Article
Background The present study examined temporality in the representation of food in two popular British women's magazines between 1950 and 1998. MethodsA quantitative content analysis of (i) prevalence of cooking, slimming, nutrition advice in articles; (ii) prevalence of food advertising by food type; and (iii) likelihood of various nutrition and consumer messages in advertising was performed on a sample comprising 200 magazines, with 3045 advertisements and 88 articles. ResultsThe prevalence of food advertisements decreased (P<0.001), whereas food articles increased, across decades (P<0.001). Cooking tips dominated 1950s food writing (100%), contrasting with miniscule coverage in the 1990s (5%). Slimming advice was not represented in 1950s articles and was most common in 1970s articles (55% of articles). Food advertising for all food types decreased in the 1990s decade. There were greater bread and cereals (P<0.001), protein foods (P=0.001) and dairy (P<0.001) advertising in later decades; advertising for sugar- and fat-rich foods (P<0.001), condiments and baking ingredients (P<0.001) and beverages (P<0.001) was greater in earlier decades. Odds of advertising claims for energy, easy digestion, nourishment, general health, economy, good for family (all P<0.01), pleased others (P=0.017) and convenience (P=0.031) were greater in the 1950s and decreased thereafter. Claims around taste and quality were highest in the 1960s (all P<0.01). Mineral, additive-free, and protein claims were most likely to be invoked in 1970s advertising (all P<0.01). Low-fat, low-calorie and fibre claims peaked in the 1980s (all P<0.01), whereas the odds of specific fat claims was greatest in the 1990s (P=0.015). Conclusions Representation of food resonated with prevailing food culture but was not always congruent with nutrition policy.
 
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Article
It has been suggested that rising obesity among children is partly attributable to sugary foods and soft drinks driving an increase in energy intake (EI). Yet historical data on sugar intake are sparse. The present study calculated total sugar intake de novo among 3296 children aged 10-11 and 14-15 years in 1983 and compared EI, macronutrients and sugar sources with data from 459 children of same age in the 1997 National Diet and Nutrition Survey. Secondary analysis of 7-day weighed diet records and anthropometric data from two British surveys. Compositional data on sugars applied to individual food codes to calculate sugar intake and sources for 1983. Trends examined before/after adjustment for low/high energy reporting (LHER) defined as EI : basal metabolic rate <1.16 or >2.65. Mean EI (kJ day(-1)) was 7% lower in 1997 than in 1983, mainly as a result of lower fat intake. After excluding LHER, mean EI was 3% lower in 1997. Mean body mass index (BMI) increased by 0.7-1 kg m(-2) (2-3 kg). Total sugar intake averaged 115 g day(-1) in 1983 and 113 g day(-1) in 1997 (122 versus 127 g day(-1) excluding LHER, P = 0.08). Excluding LHER, fat energy was lower in 1997 (35.4% versus 37.8%) and sugars slightly higher (23.6% versus 22.3%). Sugar sources showed a marked shift away from table sugar with smaller falls in milk, biscuits and cakes, counterbalanced by an significant increase in sugar from soft drinks and, to a lesser extent, fruit juice and breakfast cereals. Although the study design precludes drawing causal inferences regarding nutrient intake and obesity, a higher prevalence of under-reporting and lower levels of physical activity in 1997 could explain the paradox of lower reported EI and rising BMI.
 
Article
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).
 
Article
To assess trends in the nutritional quality of hospital menus and examine differences between menus used in hospitals with cook-chill or cook-fresh food services. Standard patient menus were analysed against 28 criteria to assess nutritional standards and compared with results from similar studies in 1986 and 1993. Menus were collected from 80 hospitals in New South Wales (NSW), Australia, including 36 using cook-chill food service systems. Chi-squared analysis was used to assess differences between the proportions of hospitals meeting the criteria in 1993 and 2001, and between different types of hospitals. In 2001, compared with 1993, significantly many hospitals offered more than one hot choice at the evening meal, more menus highlighted low fat items and more calcium-rich foods were available. More than 90% of hospitals allowed patients to select their own menu, offered wholemeal breads and high-fibre breakfast cereals, fresh fruit, polyunsaturated margarine, a milk dessert at least once a day and two or more hot options at the midday meal. Hospitals with cook-chill food services had menus that were more likely to meet nutritional recommendations, although they were less likely to offer a choice of serving size. A high proportion of unpopular choices were offered in menus, especially meat dishes and desserts. Since 1986, NSW hospital menus have improved to offer choices that conform better to dietary guidelines. Cook-chill food services may have positive and negative impacts on meal choices. The assessment criteria are useful in hospitals to assess their menus.
 
Article
Background: There is strong evidence of a upward secular trend in skinfold thickness (SFT) and the prevalence of obesity has increased substantially over recent decades in developed countries. However, no studies on this trend have been reported in Shandong Province, China. The present study aimed to assess the decennial change in SFT and body composition among children and adolescents in Shandong Province during the past 15 years (1995-2010). Methods: Data were obtained from two national surveys on student's constitution and health carried out by the government in 1995 and 2010 in Shandong Province, China. A total of 14 780 (7198 in 1995 and 7582 in 2010) students aged 7-18 years participated in the present study. Weight and SFT of all subjects were measured. Percentage body fat (%FM) was estimated by SFT, and fat mass (FM) and fat-free mass (FFM) were calculated from: FM (kg) = %FM × weight (kg)/100; FFM (kg) = weight (kg)-FM(kg). The range of differences of weight, SFT, FM and FFM over the different age groups between the 1995 and 2010 samples were calculated. Results: In the past 15 years, mean values of SFT have increased. The mean (range) increments of SFT were 6.28 (2.91-11.22) mm for boys and 3.29 (2.22-4.29) mm for girls, demonstrating a mean increase of 32% for boys and 14% for girls. The mean (range) increments of weight, FM and FFM were 7.26 (4.41-10.82) kg, 3.70 (1.47-6.58) kg and 3.56 (1.24-5.27) kg, at rates of 18%, 47% and 10% for boys, respectively, and 4.14 (2.78-5.64) kg, 1.68 (1.02-2.27) kg and 2.46 (1.52-3.49) kg, at rates of 11%, 20% and 8% for girls, respectively. Conclusions: The mean values of SFT, FM and FFM have increased over time. Rates of increase were greater for FM than FFM.
 
Article
To describe the diet of schoolchildren aged 7 years, and identify gender differences in food and nutrient intakes. A cohort of children resident in the south-west of England in 1999/2000. Diet was assessed using three 1-day unweighed food diaries. Nutrient intakes were compared with dietary reference values for this age group, and with children aged 7-10 years in the British National Diet and Nutrition Survey. Food and nutrient intakes were contrasted between boys and girls. Median nutrient intakes exceeded the reference nutrient intake (RNI) for most nutrients. Median intakes of iron and zinc were below the RNI. Median sodium intake was greater than the maximum set by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition. The mean energy intake for boys and girls, respectively, were 7.3 and 6.8 MJ, this is below the estimated average requirement. The percentage of energy from fat was 35.3% for boys and 36.1% for girls. Boys had higher iron intakes than girls, even after adjustment for energy intake. There were differences in the types of foods eaten between boys and girls; girls ate more fruit and vegetables (P = 0.001) and boys ate more breakfast cereals (P = 0.016). The dietary intakes of these 7-year-old children were adequate for most nutrients. However, a reduction in the sodium content of the diet would be advantageous. Fruit and vegetable consumption should be encouraged particularly among boys.
 
Article
Background: Untreated glycogen storage disease (GSD)-1a patients experience hypoglycaemia and growth retardation. The present study examined the effects of dietary interventions on the maintenance of normoglycaemia. Methods: Clinical trials were identified from EMBASE (January 1980 to November 2011), MEDLINE (January 1948 to November 2011) and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (2011, Issue 4). The intermittent administration of uncooked cornstarch was compared with: (i) continuous nocturnal feeding of dextrose; (ii) modified uncooked cornstarch; and (iii) dextrose and an uncooked cornstarch-dextrose mixture. One author extracted the data, and assessed the trial eligibility and risk of bias. Quality assessment and data extraction were conducted and checked independently. Results: Of 41 articles retrieved, five controlled trials (49 participants) were identified with follow-up at 2 days to 14 years. Results from three nonrandomised controlled trials comparing uncooked cornstarch with continuous nocturnal feeding of dextrose were pooled in a meta-analysis based on a fixed-effect model. Twenty-six participants (three trials) receiving uncooked cornstarch showed a significant increase in blood glucose concentration: mean difference (MD) 0.62 mmol L(-1) [95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.23-1.00] (P = 0.002), 21 (two trials) increased serum insulin: MD 62.37 pmol L(-1) (95% CI = 32.19-92.55) (P < 0.0001) and 22 (three trials) increased plasma total cholesterol: MD 0.68 mmol L(-1) (95% CI = 0.17- 1.20) (P = 0.01) compared to continuous nocturnal feeding of dextrose. Twenty-eight subjects (three trials) showed decreased plasma lactate after nocturnal feeding: MD -0.42 mmol L(-1) (95% CI = -0.58 to -0.25) (P < 0.00001). Conclusions: Short- to long-term overnight intermittent administration of uncooked cornstarch prevents nocturnal hypoglycaemia in GSD-1a children more effectively than continuous nocturnal feeding of dextrose.
 
Article
It is currently unclear how physical activity and diet interact within the ranges of activity seen in the general population. This study aimed to establish whether a small, acute, increase in physical activity would lead to compensatory change in energy intake and nutrient balance, and to provide power analysis data for future research in this field. Twelve participants were studied over 7 days of habitual activity and 2 weeks after instruction to increase physical activity by 2000 steps per day. Physical activity was assessed using a diary, the 'activPAL' activity monitor and a pedometer. Dietary analyses from prospective food diaries were compared between the first and third weeks. Participants increased step-counts (+2600 steps per day, P = 0.008) and estimated energy expenditure (+300-1000 kJ day(-1), P = 0.002) but did not significantly change their energy intake, dietary composition or number of meals per day. From reverse power analysis 38 participants would be needed to exclude a change in energy intake of 400 kJ day(-1) with 90% power at P < 0.05; 400 kJ day(-1) would compensate for a 2000 steps per day increase in physical activity. These results did not demonstrate any compensatory increase in food consumption when physical activity was increased by walking an average of 2600 additional steps per day. Power analysis indicates that a larger study (n = 38) will be necessary to exclude such an effect with confidence.
 
Article
Red and processed meat intakes have been positively associated with the risk of several major chronic diseases. Understanding population intakes is important when formulating dietary recommendations. The present study investigated the dispersion of intakes of red and processed meat and associations with dietary, socio-demographic and risk factors. The present study comprised a secondary analysis of the British National Diet and Nutrition Survey 2000/1, including 7-day dietary records, from 766 male and 958 female respondents aged 19–64 years. Composite dishes were disaggregated into primary ingredients. Self-reported vegetarians (V) were grouped into one stratum and other respondents were stratified into five groups (F1–F5) according to energy-adjusted red plus processed meat (RPM) intake, to give six strata. 7-day RPM intakes were adjusted to estimate ‘usual’ habitual intakes, using ratios of between-person to total variance in daily intakes. Mean recorded intakes of red, processed, white and total meat were 48, 41, 40 and 129 g day−1, respectively, in males and 30, 22, 30 and 82 g day−1 in females. Estimated habitual intakes of RPM standardised to sex-specific energy intakes across the six strata were: 12 (V), 56, 76, 90, 105 and 137 g day−1 in males and 5 (V), 34, 46, 55, 65 and 88 g day−1 in females. Lower RPM consumers tended to be of higher social class and educational level and to have more favourable levels of some risk factors. Mean intakes of red, processed and white meat were of similar magnitude. Habitual intakes of RPM showed wide dispersion with one-quarter of males < 55 g day−1 and one-quarter of females < 27 g day−1. Lowering overall RPM consumption could be achieved by seeking greater reductions among current high consumers.
 
Article
Background: To investigate changes in intakes of 'negative' and 'positive' foods, fruit, vegetables, and salad in serial cohorts of 9-10-year-old children from 2000-2001 to 2010-2011. Methods: For this serial, cross-sectional study, children in school year 5 (9-10 years of age) completed the SportsLinx Lifestyles Survey [n = 30,239 (15,336 boys and 14,903 girls)]. Changes in positive and negative food scores, and the proportion of boys and girls reportedly consuming fruit, vegetables and salad on the previous day to surveying, were investigated annually from 2000 to 2011. Results: The consumption of negative foods declined and positive foods increased significantly compared to baseline. Positive changes in fruit, vegetables and salad consumption were observed over time, with the most recent cohort more likely to consume fruit, vegetables and salad compared to the 2000-2001 baseline. Girls displayed more favourable positive and negative food scores and were more likely to consume fruit, salad and vegetables across several study years compared to boys. Conclusions: The consumption of negative and positive foods, fruit, vegetables, and salad has improved over the last 10 years. In addition, girls appear to have better positive and negative food scores, and were more likely to consume fruit, vegetables and salad, across a number of study years or cohorts compared to boys. These encouraging findings suggest that children's food intake has improved since 2000. Furthermore, the data indicate that boys and girls may require separate or different healthy eating messages to further improve food intake.
 
Do we have evidence that any dietary advice reduces blood pressure in people with existing cardiovascular disease (all evidence level 1A)?
Article
To update dietetic guidelines summarizing the systematic review evidence on dietary advice to prevent further events in people with existing cardiovascular disease (CVD) (secondary prevention). The Cochrane Library, MEDLINE and EMBASE were comprehensively searched to November 2002 for systematic reviews on aspects of diet and heart health. Reviews were included if they searched systematically for randomised controlled trials relating to diet and secondary prevention of CVD. Two members of the UK Heart Health and Thoracic Dietitians Group critically appraised each review. The quality and results of each review were discussed and summarized in a meeting of the whole group. Providing evidence-based dietary information (including increasing omega-3 fat intake) to all people who have had a myocardial infarction will save more lives than concentrating dietary advice on just those in need of weight loss or lipid lowering. The practice of prioritizing dietetic time in secondary prevention to those with raised lipids is out of date since the advent of statin therapy. However, effective dietary advice for those with angina, stroke, peripheral vascular disease or heart failure is less clear. There is good systematic review evidence that dietary advice to those with coronary heart disease can reduce mortality and morbidity as well as modify some risk factors. Dietary advice that does this most effectively should be prioritized.
 
Article
Although initiatives are setting up to improve the nutritional status of deprived people, few studies have described the food aid user profile and evaluated their nutritional needs. The contributions of food aid to the food supply, dietary behaviour and nutritional status of food aid users were evaluated in the ABENA study. A cross-sectional study was conducted among food aid users in four urban French zones (n = 1664, age ≥18 years). Sociodemographic and economic characteristics, food insufficiency, food supply and diet behaviours were assessed using standardised questionnaires. A subsample of participants underwent clinical and biochemical examinations. Descriptive and comparative analyses were performed taking into account sample weights. Over 70% of participants used food aid as the only source of supply among numerous food groups, and one-quarter of them (27.2%) were using food aid for 3 years or more. The mean food budget was €70.0 per person per month, and 46.0% of subjects were classified as 'food-insufficient'. Half of the subjects fulfilled the French recommendations for starchy foods (48.7%) and 'meat, fish and eggs' (49.4%); 27.3% met the requirements for seafood. Only a very small proportion of participants met the recommendations for fruits and vegetables (1.2%) and dairy products (9.2%). In addition, 16.7% of subjects were obese, 29.4% had high blood pressure, 14.8% were anaemic, 67.9% were at risk of folate deficiency and 85.6% had vitamin D deficiency. These results provide evidence of an unhealthy diet and poor health profiles in severely disadvantaged persons and highlight the importance of food aid in this population. Thus, this study points to the necessity of improving the nutritional quality of currently distributed food aid.
 
Article
The Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005 will be implemented in England and Wales in 2007 and have consequences for dietitians who work with people who may lack capacity to make specific decisions. This paper will explore issues arising from the introduction of the Act and considers the implications for dietitians involved in the delivery of clinical care, using enteral feeding as an illustrative example. If patients lack capacity to make specific decisions, dietitians will be required to record if, how and why they reached a decision, how they are involved in the decision making process and need to be able to justify their actions in relation to those decisions. This paper discusses the importance of dietitians’ involvement in best interests decision making and considers the implications of decision making where people have drawn up a Lasting Power of Attorney. The role of such advance decisions is discussed and consideration is given to the potential compatibility of perspectives between the patient and family that may give rise to disputes. Dietitians may be well placed within multidisciplinary team working to ensure patients and their carers are part of the decision making process through effective communication and support for patients. Dietitians in England and Wales must consider the implications of the MCA upon their clinical practice and others outside these jurisdictions may like to reflect on the relevance of such developments in their own contexts.
 
Article
Background: School meal standards were introduced in 2006 (Department for Education and Skills) and caterers are expected to comply with these standards. No research has been conducted looking at the caterer's experiences and perceptions of implementing these standards. This area has 32 school meal provider organisations for 103 schools. Half the schools are with one provider and the others are, mostly, single-handed in-house operations, often managed by a local community member. The aim of the current study was to explore caterers’ understanding of the school meal standards, the barriers to implementation, and proposed solutions, to inform local practice.
 
Article
Misreporting is common when collecting dietary intake data, although relatively little is known about the types of foods misreported among children. The present study aimed to identify differences in the reporting of food types between plausible and misreporters of energy intake in a national nutrition survey of Australian children. Dietary data were collected using a 24-h recall from 4826 children aged 2-16 years who were participating in the 2007 Australian National Children's Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey. Misreporters of energy intake were classified using the Goldberg criteria. Differences in the reporting of a range of food types were examined between plausible, under- and over-reporters. Compared with plausible reporters, under-reporters reported less frequent consumption and smaller quantities of consumption of both core and noncore foods. Older children (self-report) under-reported a larger selection of noncore foods than younger children (parental report). Over-reporters reported similar percentages of consumption of many core and noncore foods, with some exceptions. The quantities consumed by over-reporters were generally much larger and this was evident in younger and older children. Compared with plausible reporters, under-reporters had significantly higher intakes of protein and starch but lower intakes of sugar and fat, as percentage energy, than plausible reporters, whereas over-reporters had higher fat and lower carbohydrate intakes. Differences in the reporting of food types were common between plausible, under- and over-reporters of energy intake by children (or their parents) and were not restricted to noncore foods.
 
Top-cited authors
Miranda C E Lomer
  • King's College London
Carrie Ruxton
  • Nutrition Communications
Angela Mary Madden
  • University of Hertfordshire
Susan J Shepherd
  • Monash University (Australia)
Heidi M Staudacher
  • Deakin University