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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DEVELOPMENT AND PREVENTION OF CHILDHOOD OBESITY Title: Correlates of availability and accessibility of fruits and vegetables in homes of low-income Hispanic families

Authors
item Dave, Jayna -
item Evans, Alexandra -
item Pfeiffer, Karin -
item Watkins, Ken -
item Saunders, Ruth -

Submitted to: Health Education Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 1, 2009
Publication Date: February 1, 2010
Citation: Dave, J.M., Evans, A.E., Pfeiffer, K.A., Watkins, K.W., Saunders, R.P. 2010. Correlates of availability and accessibility of fruits and vegetables in homes of low-income Hispanic families. Health Education Research. 25(1):97-108.

Interpretive Summary: Obesity is a major issue facing American children, especially minorities. We evaluated the link between parental factors (practices to promote healthy eating, role modeling, etc.), child’s likes and dislikes for fruit and vegetables (FV), and availability and accessibility (AA) in homes of poor Hispanic families with young children. One hundred and eighty-four parents from low-income families completed a survey, including factors such as age, gender, income, education, language spoken at home and food insecurity among others. We were able to conclude that language spoken at home; parental practices that promote intake of FV, parental role modeling and perceived benefits of fast food were linked with AA of FV at home. These results are important as health education programs should consider the language spoken at home and target at improving parental factors in order to improve AA of FV.

Technical Abstract: Availability and accessibility (AA) has been consistently shown across studies as the most important correlate of fruits and vegetables (FV) intake. However, there is little data on factors that influence AA of FV, especially in Hispanic families. The objective of this cross-sectional study was to examine the association between parental factors, child’s preferences for FV and AA of FV in homes of low-income Hispanic families with children 5–12 years old. A convenience sample of 184 parents of low socioeconomic status recruited through public elementary schools completed a self-administered questionnaire about demographics, language spoken at home, and food insecurity (FI). Parental factors and child’s preferences were measured using a 16-item questionnaire, which was developed specifically for the study. AA of FV was measured using a validated nine-item index. Hierarchical multiple regression analysis indicated that language spoken at home, parental practices that promote consumption of FV, parental role modeling, and perceived benefits of fast food had significant and independent associations with AA of FV at home. Intervention programs should take into consideration the language spoken at home and target at improving parental factors in order to improve AA of FV.

Last Modified: 10/25/2014