A 2003 Steptoe et al Article 'Behavioral Counseling to Increase Consumption of Fruit and Vegetables in Low Income Adults' Revieweed
This is a 5 page paper reviewing Steptoe et al (2003) trial “Behavioral Counseling to Increase Consumption of Fruit and Vegetables in Low Income Adults”. Investigators Steptoe et al (2003) conducted a randomized trial to study the effect behavioral counseling had in regards to increasing the consumption of fruit and vegetables in low income adults. The investigators were successful in outlining their assumptions for the study, participants, methods, assessment and measurements, results and conclusion in addition to including the limitations of their study. Using 271 participants aged 18-70 years old from a deprived ethnically mixed inner city area, the investigators conducted brief individual behavioral counseling sessions with groups based on the stage of change model as opposed to time matched nutrition education counseling. Assessment of self reported number of portions of fruit and vegetables as well as plasma carotene, tocopherol, ascorbic acid concentrations and urinary potassium excretion levels were taken at baseline, eight weeks and 12 months after the counseling sessions. Overall, it was found that consumption of fruit and vegetables increased in the behavioral (by 1.5 portions) and nutrition (by 0.9 portions) groups as well as an increase in the plasma carotene and tocopherol concentrations but the carotene levels were has a significantly higher increase in the behavioral group. The percentage of persons eating five or more portions per day increased by 42% in the behavioral group and 27% in the nutrition group. The investigators were able to surmise from these results that “brief individual counseling in primary care can elicit sustained increases in consumption of fruit and vegetables in low income adults in the general population” (Steptoe et al, 2003, p. 855).
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