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Research Project: Childhood Obesity Prevention

Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: Diet and physical activity in African-American girls: Seasonal differences

Author
item Cullen, Karen - Children'S Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)
item Liu, Yan - Children'S Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)
item Thompson, Deborah - Debbe

Submitted to: American Journal of Health Behavior
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/19/2016
Publication Date: 3/1/2017
Publication URL: http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/5695440
Citation: Cullen, K.W., Liu, Y., Thompson, D.J. 2017. Diet and physical activity in African-American girls: Seasonal differences. American Journal of Health Behavior. 41(2):171-178.

Interpretive Summary: Diet and physical activity may vary by season of the year. This study investigated whether diet and steps per day differed by season for 342 8-10 year-old African-American girls, 53% were low income. During the summer, girls consumed significantly less 100% fruit juice than during the winter and spring. Low-income girls also consumed lower amounts of dairy foods in the summer. More desserts were consumed during winter than in spring or summer. Significantly more sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) were consumed during spring and summer for all girls than in the fall. Steps per day for all girls and the low-income girls were significantly lower in summer compared to the other seasons. Higher consumption SSBs and lower steps per day during the summer are a concern, particularly for African-American girls at high risk for obesity. Interventions to address these seasonal differences should be initiated.

Technical Abstract: Diet and physical activity (PA) may vary by season. Two 24-hour dietary recalls and 7 days of accelerometry were collected from 342 8-10 year-old African-American girls between January 2013 and October 2014. Season was based on time of data collection (fall, spring, winter, summer). Seasonal differences in diet and PA were assessed. Mean age was 8.9 years; 53% were low income. Girls with summer baseline data collection reported consuming significantly less 100% fruit juice than those with winter and spring data. Summer dairy consumption was significantly lower than the other 3 seasons for low-income girls. Significantly more desserts were consumed during winter than in spring or summer. Significantly more sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) were consumed during spring and summer for all girls than in the fall. Steps per day for all girls and the low-income girls were significantly lower in summer compared to the other seasons. Higher consumption SSBs and lower steps per day during the summer are a concern, particularly for African-American girls at high risk for obesity. Interventions to address these seasonal differences should be initiated.