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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DEVELOPMENT AND PREVENTION OF CHILDHOOD OBESITY

Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: Evaluation of a web-based program promoting healthy eating and physical activity for adolescents: Teen Choice: Food and Fitness

Authors
item Cullen, Karen -
item Thompson, Deborah
item Boushey, Carol -
item Konzelmann, Karen -
item Chen, T -

Submitted to: Health Education Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 25, 2013
Publication Date: June 6, 2013
Citation: Cullen, K.W., Thompson, D.J., Boushey, C., Konzelmann, K., Chen, T.A. 2013. Evaluation of a web-based program promoting healthy eating and physical activity for adolescents: Teen Choice: Food and Fitness. Health Education Research. 28(4):704-714.

Interpretive Summary: This study tested the impact of a website promoting nutrition and physical activity for adolescents (Teen Choice: Food and Fitness). Participants were 12- to 17-year-old adolescents in the Houston area who completed online surveys measuring diet, physical activity, sedentary behavior, and other factors at baseline. Then participants were asked to log onto either the intervention or the control condition website weekly for 8 weeks to review web content and set goals to improve dietary and physical activity behaviors. After 8 weeks, participants completed the same surveys. The intervention group adolescents reported eating vegetables more often, and both groups reported more physical activity and less TV watching. The average logon rate was 75% over the 8 weeks. This website enabled adolescents to improve vegetable intake and daily physical activity and reduce sedentary behavior, and had a high logon rate. Future research should identify effective methods for disseminating this website to wider audiences.

Technical Abstract: This randomized clinical trial tested the impact of a website promoting nutrition and physical activity for adolescents (Teen Choice: Food and Fitness). Participants, 408 12- to 17-year-old adolescents in the Houston area, completed online surveys measuring diet, physical activity, sedentary behavior, and diet/physical activity mediators at baseline. After randomization, they were asked to log onto either the intervention or the control condition website weekly for 8 weeks to review web content and set goals to improve dietary and physical activity behaviors. Post-test occurred after 8 weeks. Logistic regression analyses and one-way analyses of covariance were used in the analyses. At post, more intervention group adolescents reported eating three or more daily vegetable servings in the past week compared with the control group (P < 0.05); both groups reported significant increases in physical activity (P < 0.001) and significant decreases in TV watching (P < 0.01). Average logon rate was 75% over the 8 weeks; there was no difference by condition. The website enabled adolescents to improve vegetable intake and daily physical activity and reduce sedentary behavior, and had a high logon rate. Future research should identify effective methods for disseminating this website to wider audiences.

Last Modified: 7/30/2014