Date Approved

10-15-2018

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Health Sciences

Committee Member

Anahita Mistry, PhD, Chair

Committee Member

Rubina Haque, PhD, RD

Abstract

Lifestyle choices affect the risk of obesity and ill-health among youth. This study determined whether providing nutrition education to adolescent females enrolled in dance classes influenced their beverage and food choices. It was hypothesized that providing six 10-minute nutrition education sessions for three weeks to adolescent dancers would increase their healthy beverage and food choices. Sixteen girls (12-18 years), from two dance studios in Kingsport, Tennessee, completed this pre-test/post-test study. After nutrition education, soda consumption reduced by 7.7%; sugar sweetened beverages (excluding sodas) reduced by 23%; intakes of fruits and vegetables were enhanced by 5.6% and 21%, respectively. Paradoxically, home-cooked meals and breakfast consumption on dance practice days were reduced by 12.5% and 6.2%, respectively. Although some improvements in beverage and food choices were evident, these changes were not statistically significant due to the small sample size. The current study provides a framework for future studies on providing lifestyle education.

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