Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: August 18, 2009
Publication Date: January 1, 2011
Citation: Baranowski, T. 2011. The economic value of dietary supplements. In: Watson, R.R., Gerald, J.K., Preedy, V.R. editors. Nutrients, Dietary Supplements, and Nutriceuticals, Cost Analysis Versus Clinical Benefits. New York, NY: Human Press. p. 57-62.
Fruit and vegetable (FV) consumption is possibly protective of heart disease, some cancers, and accrued adiposity, among other adult diseases. Since dietary intake levels track from childhood to the adult years, it is prudent to encourage children to eat more FV in order to establish healthy habits carried into the adult years. Using the mediating variable model to understand how interventions change behavior, interventions must influence the strong causal influences on behavior; these changes induce changes in the behavior. A large number of variables have been related to FV intake among children, but their "causal" status is unknown, and the strength of relationship is often diminished by using variables measured with low reliability. One variable that has been consistently related to FV intake, with some evidence of causal influence, is home availability of FV (i.e. the number of different FV items in the home). Thus, increasing home FV availability should increase FV consumption. Increasing home FV availability, particularly in urban areas, requires more purchases of FV.