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Correlates of fruit and vegetable intake among parents and adolescents: findings from the Family Life, Activity, Sun, Health, and Eating (FLASHE) study

  • Courtney A Parks (a1), Casey Blaser (a1), Teresa M Smith (a1), Eric E Calloway (a1), April Y Oh (a2), Laura A Dwyer (a2), Benmai Liu (a2), Linda C Nebeling (a2) and Amy L Yaroch (a1)...



The present study aimed to examine the correlates of fruit and vegetable intake (FVI) separately among parents and their adolescents.


Cross-sectional surveys.


Online survey.


Parents and adolescents completed the Family Life, Activity, Sun, Health, and Eating (FLASHE) survey through the National Cancer Institute. The survey assessed daily intake frequencies of food/beverage groups, psychosocial, parenting and sociodemographic factors. Generalized linear models were run for both parents and adolescents, for a total of six models (three each): (i) sociodemographic characteristics; (ii) psychosocial factors; (iii) parent/caregiver factors.


Parent participants (n 1542) were predominantly 35–59 years old (86 %), female (73 %), non-Hispanic White (71 %) or non-Hispanic Black (17 %), with household income <$US 100 000 (79 %). Adolescents (n 805) were aged 12–14 years (50 %), non-Hispanic White (66 %) and non-Hispanic Black (15 %). Parents consumed 2·9 cups fruits and vegetables (F&V) daily, while adolescents consumed 2·2 cups daily. Educational attainment (higher education had greater FVI) and sex (men consumed more than women; all P<0·001) were significant FVI predictors. Parents with greater autonomous and controlled motivation, self-efficacy and preferences for fruit reported higher FVI (all P<0·001). Similarly, adolescents with greater autonomous and controlled motivation, self-efficacy and knowledge reported higher FVI (all P<0·001). Parenting factors of importance were co-deciding how many F&V teens should have, rules, having F&V in the home and cooking meals from scratch (all P<0·05).


Findings suggest factors that impact FVI among parents and their adolescent(s), which highlight the importance of the role of parent behaviour and can inform tailored approaches for increasing FVI in various settings.


Corresponding author

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