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A Multicomponent, School-Based Intervention, the Shaping Healthy Choices Program, Improves Nutrition-Related Outcomes

Scherr, Rachel E., Linnell, Jessica D., Dharmar, Madan, Beccarelli, Lori M., Bergman, Jacqueline J., Briggs, Marilyn, Brian, Kelley M., Feenstra, Gail, Hillhouse, J. Carol, Keen, Carl L., Ontai, Lenna L., Schaefer, Sara E., Smith, Martin H., Spezzano, Theresa, Steinberg, Francene M., Sutter, Carolyn, Young, Heather M., Zidenberg-Cherr, Sheri
Journal of nutrition education and behavior 2017 v.49 no.5 pp. 368-379.e1
analysis of variance, body mass index, elementary students, nutrition knowledge, schools, t-test, vegetables, waist-to-height ratio
To evaluate the effectiveness of the Shaping Healthy Choices Program (SHCP).A clustered, randomized, controlled intervention lasting 1 school year.Schools in northern and central California.Fourth-graders (aged 9–10 years) at 2 control schools (n = 179) and 2 intervention schools (n = 230).Garden-enhanced education, family, and community partnerships; increased regionally procured produce in the lunchroom; and school-site wellness committees.Changes in body mass index (BMI) percentiles/Z-scores; nutrition knowledge, science process skills, and vegetable identification and preferences; and reported fruit and vegetable intake.Student t test, chi-square, ANOVA of change, and multilevel regression mixed model to evaluate change in outcomes with school as a random effect to account for cluster design effects. Statistical significance was set at P < .05.There was a greater improvement in BMI percentile (−6.08; P < 0.01), BMI Z-score (−0.28; P < .001), and waist-to-height ratio (−0.02; P < .001) in the intervention compared with the control schools.The SHCP resulted in improvements in nutrition knowledge, vegetable identification, and a significant decrease in BMI percentiles. This supports the concept that the SHCP can be used to improve the health of upper elementary school students.