University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Fruit and Vegetable Intake of Primary School Children: a Study of School Meals.

Upton, Dominic, Upton, Penney and Taylor, Charlotte (2012) Fruit and Vegetable Intake of Primary School Children: a Study of School Meals. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, 25 (6). pp. 557-362. ISSN 1365-277x

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Despite an increasing focus on the nutritional content of school meals and initiatives such as the School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme, children are not meeting the recommended levels of fruit and vegetable consumption. The study aimed to examine children’s fruit and vegetable consumption in 15 primary schools across the West Midlands region. A total of 1296 children, aged 4-11 were observed for five consecutive days and consumption of all food items measured using the weighed intake method. Differences in mean intake of fruit, vegetables and foods high in fat and sugar between Key Stage 1 and 2 were determined. Two thirds of the children in the study did not consume any fruit at lunch time and only 3% of children consumed at least one portion as part of their school meal. The proportion of children consuming some quantity of vegetable at lunchtime was more than double that consuming fruit. Children in Key Stage 1 consumed significantly more vegetables on average than children in Key Stage 2 (p=<0.05), however no significant differences were found for consumption of fruit.Despite the introduction of food based standards for school meal provision; children are not consuming adequate portions of fruit and vegetables at lunchtime. The importance of strategies used by catering staff to encourage consumption of fruit and vegetables should be harnessed to encourage children to taste fruit and vegetables provided. Further research is recommended to increase the evidence base on strategies to promote fruit and vegetable consumption in children.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information:

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Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: children, diet, fruit, school meals, vegetables
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > School of Psychology
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Depositing User: Charlotte Taylor
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2012 15:17
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2020 16:58

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