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Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents

A special issue of Nutrients (ISSN 2072-6643). This special issue belongs to the section "Nutrition and Public Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (5 January 2024) | Viewed by 14985

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Psychology, University of Almería, 04120 Almería, Spain
Interests: physical education; physical activity; motivation; emotional health, prosocial and antisocial behavior
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Today, the rate of obesity has become alarming. According to the World Health Organization, the data can be considered epidemiological. In Western countries where the socio-economic level is high, it is known that the rate of childhood obesity has been increasing in recent years. Moreover, recent research has shown that the recent confinement of the general population to their homes because of the pandemic caused by coronavirus (COVID-19) has contributed toward many people living a more sedentary life than previously. The consequences of sedentary lifestyles and poor eating habits can be seen at various levels of health. At the physical level, we find high probabilities of experiencing diseases (i.e., metabolic, cardiovascular, immune system depression, and even certain types of cancer), which are related to a high mortality rate. On a psychological level, sedentary lifestyles and poor eating habits are associated with low self-esteem and high body dissatisfaction. On a social level, it is known that adolescents with high body mass indexes are more likely to experience bullying.

This Special Issue aims to display the importance of promoting physical activity and maintaining a balanced diet based on research and interventions in the field of education, physical activity, and social psychology in adolescents. Possible topics include: the family environment and nutrition; the influence of the educational context on eating habits; the importance of being active; quality of life; healthy and unhealthy eating habits; physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

Prof. Dr. Rubén Trigueros Ramos
Prof. Dr. José M. Aguilar-Parra
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • dietary intake
  • healthy habits
  • physical activity
  • balanced diet

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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18 pages, 972 KiB  
Article
Determinants of Diet Quality in Adolescents: Results from the Prospective Population-Based EVA-Tyrol and EVA4YOU Cohorts
by Katharina Mueller, Alex Messner, Johannes Nairz, Bernhard Winder, Anna Staudt, Katharina Stock, Nina Gande, Christoph Hochmayr, Benoît Bernar, Raimund Pechlaner, Andrea Griesmacher, Alexander E. Egger, Ralf Geiger, Ursula Kiechl-Kohlendorfer, Michael Knoflach, Sophia J. Kiechl and on behalf of the EVA-Tyrol and EVA4YOU Study Groups
Nutrients 2023, 15(24), 5140; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15245140 - 18 Dec 2023
Viewed by 962
Abstract
(1) Background: Unhealthy dietary behaviors are estimated to be one of the leading causes of death globally and are often shaped at a young age. Here, we investigated adolescent diet quality and its predictors, including nutrition knowledge, in two large Central European cohorts. [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Unhealthy dietary behaviors are estimated to be one of the leading causes of death globally and are often shaped at a young age. Here, we investigated adolescent diet quality and its predictors, including nutrition knowledge, in two large Central European cohorts. (2) Methods: In 3056 participants of the EVA-Tyrol and EVA4YOU prospective population-based cohort studies aged 14 to 19 years, diet quality was assessed using the AHEI-2010 and DASH scores, and nutrition knowledge was assessed using the questionnaire from Turconi et al. Associations were examined utilizing multivariable linear regression. (3) Results: The mean overall AHEI-2010 score was 42%, and the DASH score was 45%. Female participants (60.6%) had a significantly higher diet quality according to the AHEI-2010 and DASH score. AHEI-2010 and DASH scores were significantly associated (p < 0.001) with sex, school type, smoking, and total daily energy intake. The DASH score was additionally significantly associated (p < 0.001) with age, socioeconomic status, and physical activity. Participants with better nutrition knowledge were more likely to be older, to attend a general high school, to live in a high-income household, to be non-smokers, and to have a higher diet quality according to the AHEI-2010 and DASH score. (4) Conclusions: Predictors of better diet quality included female sex, physical activity, educational level, and nutrition knowledge. These results may aid focused interventions to improve diet quality in adolescents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents)
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12 pages, 674 KiB  
Article
Impact of the Family Environment on the Frequency of Animal-Based Product Consumption in School-Aged Children in Central Poland
by Ewelina Pałkowska-Goździk, Katarzyna Zadka and Danuta Rosołowska-Huszcz
Nutrients 2023, 15(12), 2781; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15122781 - 17 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1302
Abstract
Animal-sourced foods (ASFs) have a high nutritional value, which makes them important elements of young people’s diets. Several environmental factors might affect the dietary habits of children and adolescents, and their identification seems to be a principal reason to maintain their healthy eating [...] Read more.
Animal-sourced foods (ASFs) have a high nutritional value, which makes them important elements of young people’s diets. Several environmental factors might affect the dietary habits of children and adolescents, and their identification seems to be a principal reason to maintain their healthy eating practice. Thus, we aimed to investigate selected environmental factors (a place of residence, net income, mother’s education level, number of siblings, and mother’s BMI), which may be linked to the consumption frequency of ASFs among school-aged children. In total, 892 mothers of primary school children aged 7–14 years from central Poland took part in the anonymous and voluntary survey. The frequency of meat and meat product consumption was affected by the mother’s education level, place of residence, and net income. Generally, meat was eaten more often by the city children (G = 0.178, p < 0.01) of better-educated mothers (G = 0.268, p < 0.001) and higher-income families (G = 0.209, p < 0.001). A higher level of education was linked to more frequent fish consumption but only in the younger group (G = 0.130, p < 0.05). The frequency of egg intake was positively associated with the maternal level of education (G = 0.185, p < 0.001), children’s gender (girls > boys, G = 0.123, p < 0.05), and place of residence (city > village, G = 0.214, p < 0.001). In turn, the frequency of milk and dairy intake was related only to the place of residence (village > city, G = 0.97, p <0.05). It can be concluded that the mother’s level of education is a key factor linked to the selected children’s dietary habits. Thus, we believe that successful health education programs designed for young people should include the maternal capacity to interpret and adapt information into daily practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents)
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14 pages, 2568 KiB  
Article
Ultra-Processed Food vs. Fruit and Vegetable Consumption before and during the COVID-19 Pandemic among Greek and Swedish Students
by Friska Dhammawati, Petter Fagerberg, Christos Diou, Ioanna Mavrouli, Evangelia Koukoula, Eirini Lekka, Leandros Stefanopoulos, Nicos Maglaveras, Rachel Heimeier, Youla Karavidopoulou and Ioannis Ioakimidis
Nutrients 2023, 15(10), 2321; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15102321 - 16 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1640
Abstract
Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted children’s lifestyles, including dietary behaviors. Of particular concern among these behaviors is the heightened prevalence of ultra-processed food (UPF) consumption, which has been linked to the development of obesity and related non-communicable diseases. The present study examines [...] Read more.
Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted children’s lifestyles, including dietary behaviors. Of particular concern among these behaviors is the heightened prevalence of ultra-processed food (UPF) consumption, which has been linked to the development of obesity and related non-communicable diseases. The present study examines the changes in (1) UPF and (2) vegetable and/or fruit consumption among school-aged children in Greece and Sweden before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: The analyzed dataset consisted of main meal pictures (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) captured by 226 Greek students (94 before the pandemic and 132 during the pandemic) and 421 Swedish students (293 before and 128 during the pandemic), aged 9–18, who voluntarily reported their meals using a mobile application. The meal pictures were collected over four-month periods over two consecutive years; namely, between the 20th of August and the 20th of December in 2019 (before the COVID-19 outbreak) and the same period in 2020 (during the COVID-19 outbreak). The collected pictures were annotated manually by a trained nutritionist. A chi-square test was performed to evaluate the differences in proportions before versus during the pandemic. Results: In total, 10,770 pictures were collected, including 6474 pictures from before the pandemic and 4296 pictures collected during the pandemic. Out of those, 86 pictures were excluded due to poor image quality, and 10,684 pictures were included in the final analyses (4267 pictures from Greece and 6417 pictures from Sweden). The proportion of UPF significantly decreased during vs. before the pandemic in both populations (50% vs. 46%, p = 0.010 in Greece, and 71% vs. 66%, p < 0.001 in Sweden), while the proportion of vegetables and/or fruits significantly increased in both cases (28% vs. 35%, p < 0.001 in Greece, and 38% vs. 42%, p = 0.019 in Sweden). There was a proportional increase in meal pictures containing UPF among boys in both countries. In Greece, both genders showed an increase in vegetables and/or fruits, whereas, in Sweden, the increase in fruit and/or vegetable consumption was solely observed among boys. Conclusions: The proportion of UPF in the Greek and Swedish students’ main meals decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic vs. before the pandemic, while the proportion of main meals with vegetables and/or fruits increased. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents)
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13 pages, 300 KiB  
Article
Pilot Study on Satisfaction in Children and Adolescents after a Comprehensive Educational Program on Healthy Habits
by Noelia Belando-Pedreño, Marta Eulalia Blanco-García, José L. Chamorro and Carlos García-Martí
Nutrients 2023, 15(5), 1161; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15051161 - 25 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1790
Abstract
Prospective research in the area of Education Sciences and Physical-Sports Education agree on the need to design and implement educational programs that promote emotional competencies (ECs), interpersonal competencies (ICs), an adequate level of healthy physical activity (NAFS) and a good adherence to the [...] Read more.
Prospective research in the area of Education Sciences and Physical-Sports Education agree on the need to design and implement educational programs that promote emotional competencies (ECs), interpersonal competencies (ICs), an adequate level of healthy physical activity (NAFS) and a good adherence to the Mediterranean diet (ADM). The main objective of the study is to design an intervention program in intra- and interpersonal competencies together with nutritional education and corporality called “MotivACTION”. The sample consisted of 80 primary schoolchildren aged 8 to 14 years (M = 12.70; SD = 2.76) (37 girls and 43 boys) from two schools in the Community of Madrid. An ad-hoc questionnaire was created to assess the participant’s perception of the usefulness of the “MotivACTION” educational experience. The program “MotivACTION: Feed your SuperACTION” is designed and implemented based on the development of a workshop organized through the Universidad Europea de Madrid. As the main preliminary results of the pilot study, the schoolchildren who experienced the “MotivACTION” workshop showed high satisfaction with the educational program. They were able to create a healthy menu with the frog chef. They also felt better and happier at the end of it, and they enjoyed practicing physical activity moving to the rhythm of the music while doing mathematical calculations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents)
13 pages, 294 KiB  
Article
Intuitive Eating Behaviour among Young Malay Adults in Malaysian Higher Learning Institutions
by Rosmaliza Muhammad, Wan Nur Diana Rajab aka Wan Ismail, Syauqina Firdus, Syahrul Bariah Abdul Hamid, Ummi Mohlisi Mohd Asmawi and Norazmir Md Nor
Nutrients 2023, 15(4), 869; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15040869 - 8 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2512
Abstract
Despite the significance of dietary knowledge interventions, there is a lack of established studies on intuitive eating behaviour among young Malay adults in Malaysia. This cross-sectional study aimed to determine the intuitive eating score, identify the intuitive eating factors, and determine the association [...] Read more.
Despite the significance of dietary knowledge interventions, there is a lack of established studies on intuitive eating behaviour among young Malay adults in Malaysia. This cross-sectional study aimed to determine the intuitive eating score, identify the intuitive eating factors, and determine the association of intuitive eating with weight-control behaviours and binge eating. A total of 367 respondents completed self-administered questionnaires on sociodemographic characteristics, namely the Intuitive Eating Scale (IES-2) and The Diabetes Eating Problems Survey (DEPS). The findings reported IES-2 mean scores of 3.52 ± 0.32 and 3.47 ± 0.35 for both men and women. No difference in total IES-2 scores was found between genders for Unconditional Permission to Eat (UPE) and Reliance on Hunger and Satiety Cue (RHSC) subscales (p > 0.05). However, among all four subscales of IES-2, there was a gender difference in the mean EPR and B-FCC subscale scores (p < 0.05). A statistically significant difference was found in intuitive eating, which refers to a belief in one’s body’s ability to tell one how much to eat, in women across living areas (p < 0.05). The result shows that there is a relationship between weight-control behaviour and binge eating and dieting, with the coefficient of the relationship (R2) of 0.34. As a result, intuitive eating throughout young adulthood is likely to be related to a decreased prevalence of obesity, dieting, poor weight-management behaviours, and binge eating. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents)

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19 pages, 605 KiB  
Systematic Review
A Systematic Review of Healthy Nutrition Intervention Programs in Kindergarten and Primary Education
by Rocio Collado-Soler, Marina Alférez-Pastor, Francisco L. Torres, Rubén Trigueros, Jose M. Aguilar-Parra and Noelia Navarro
Nutrients 2023, 15(3), 541; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15030541 - 20 Jan 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 5964
Abstract
Childhood obesity and overweight rates are increasing in an exponential way. This type of diet-related health problem has consequences, not only at present but also for children’s future lives. For these reasons, it is very important to find a solution, which could be [...] Read more.
Childhood obesity and overweight rates are increasing in an exponential way. This type of diet-related health problem has consequences, not only at present but also for children’s future lives. For these reasons, it is very important to find a solution, which could be nutrition intervention programs. The main objective of this article is to investigate the effectiveness of nutrition intervention programs in children aged 3–12 around the world. We used SCOPUS, Web of Science, and PubMed databases to carry out this systematic review and we followed the PRISMA statement. Two authors conducted literature searches independently, finding a total of 138 articles. Finally, after a thorough screening, a total of 19 articles were selected for detailed analysis. The results show that, in general, nutrition intervention programs are effective in improving knowledge and behaviors about healthy habits, and, consequently, that the body mass index value is reduced. However, it is true that we found differences between the incomes of families and geographical areas. In conclusion, we encourage school centers to consider including these types of programs in their educational program and bring awareness of the importance of families too. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Sedentary Behavior in Children and Adolescents)
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