The program was divided into four sessions. Each session included four to five pages of core content, illustrations and optional links to more detailed information and special features designed to supplement session content. For example, special features illustrated serving sizes and nutritional similarities of fresh versus frozen versus canned foods. Another optional feature presented 300 fruit and vegetable-based recipes. Short video and audio files were offered to reinforce text on behavioral strategies. Once available, all program components were accessible throughout the 12-month study period.
An optional feature offered menus individually tailored by nutrition experts and were generated on the basis of participants' fruit and vegetable preferences and dietary restrictions.
At the end of the study, researchers found that there was improvement across all study groups, but the most significant changes were with the group that had motivational interviewing and counseling.
"We found that giving participants gentle reminders that refocused them on their goals greatly improved progress," says study co-author, Gwen Alexander, PhD, assistant research scientist. "They were being held accountable for their progress, which became a key motivator."
Up next: Drs. Johnson and Alexander are now working on creating a similar study focused on people ages 21 to 30, to find new strategies to help them incorporate more fruits and vegetables into their diet, while catering to their lifestyle.
|Contact: Liz Trudeau|
Henry Ford Health System