Document Type : Research Article (s)

Authors

1 Magnolia Regional Health Center, Corinth, Mississippi

2 The University of Mississippi, Mississippi, United States

Abstract

Background: Parental involvement has been identified as one of the most important factors affecting children’s health. There has been limited investigation on nutrition education resources preferred by parents living in the Mississippi Delta, a region of the state with the highest rates for poverty and diet-related diseases. Understanding what type of nutrition education resources are currently used by parents and what type of resources parents would likely use, if made available, will be beneficial to health educators in developing and disseminating nutrition education resources and facilitate the greatest impact.
Objective: Identifying nutrition education resources used by parents.
Patients and Methods: Low-income parents of elementary school-aged children were surveyed on their ‘current use’ and ‘likely use’ of nutrition education resources. Survey packets were delivered to teachers in three elementary schools who then distributed the surveys to their students to deliver to their parents. Completed surveys were returned to the teacher who delivered them to the researchers. Descriptive statistics were used to summarize responses.
Results: The most common nutrition education resources currently used by parents are nutrition facts labels (m = 3.58 ± SD 1.31), television shows (m = 3.24 ± SD 1.12), and healthy homework activities from their child’s school (m = 3.18 ± SD 1.40). Resources seldom used by parents are video games (m = 1.49 ± SD 0.87), healthy cooking classes (m = 1.76 ± SD 1.03), and online discussion boards (m = 1.75 ± SD1.01). The nutrition education resources parents would likely use are healthy homework activities (m = 4.21 ± SD .95) and information sent home from school (m = 4.15 ± SD 0.94). Parents reported they would least likely use video games (m = 1.95 ± SD 1.31), online discussion boards (m = 2.47 ± SD 1.34), and mobile phone applications (m = 2.69 ± SD 1.42).
Conclusions: Identifying nutrition education resources currently being used and most likely to be used by parents will be beneficial to health educators when developing and implementing effective nutrition interventions with parents in the Mississippi Delta and other rural regions.

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