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Philadelphia passed a 1·5-cent-per-ounce sweetened beverage tax (SBT). Revenue will fund 10 000 quality pre-kindergarten slots for poor children. It is imperative to understand how revenue from SBT can be used to fund programmes to address education and other social determinants of health. The objective of the present study was to simulate quality pre-kindergarten attendance, educational achievement and sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption among Philadelphia children and adolescents under six intervention scenarios: (i) no intervention; (ii) 10 000 additional quality pre-kindergarten slots; (iii) a 1·5-cent-per-ounce SBT; (iv) expanded pre-kindergarten and 1·5-cent-per-ounce SBT; (v) a 3-cent-per-ounce SBT; and (vi) expanded pre-kindergarten and 3-cent-per-ounce SBT.
We used an agent-based model to estimate pre-kindergarten enrolment, educational achievement and SSB consumption under the six policy scenarios. We identified key parameters in the model from the published literature and secondary analyses of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics – Child Development Supplement.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
Philadelphia children and adolescents aged 4–18 years.
A 1·5-cents-per-ounce tax would reduce SSB consumption by 1·3 drinks/week among Philadelphia children and adolescents relative to no intervention, with larger effects among children below the poverty level. Quality pre-kindergarten expansion magnifies the effect of the SBT by 8 %, but has the largest effect on moderate-income children just above the poverty level. The SBT and quality pre-kindergarten programme each reduce SSB consumption, but primarily benefit different children and adolescents.
Pairing an excise tax with a complementary programme to improve a social determinant of health represents a progressive strategy to combat obesity, a disease regressive in its social patterning.
Investments have been made to alter the food environment of neighbourhoods that have a disproportionate number of unhealthy food venues. Corner store conversions are one strategy to increase access to fruits and vegetables (F&V). Although the literature shows modest success, the effectiveness of these interventions remains equivocal. The present paper reports on the evaluation of Proyecto MercadoFRESCO, a corner store conversion intervention in two Latino communities.
A repeated cross-sectional design was employed. Data were stratified by intervention arm and bivariate tests assessed changes over time. Logistic and multiple regression models with intervention arm, time and the interaction of intervention and time were conducted. Supplementary analyses account for clustering of patrons within stores and staggering of store conversions.
Three stores were converted and five stores served as comparisons in East Los Angeles and Boyle Heights, California, USA.
Store patrons were interviewed before (n550) and after (n407) the intervention.
Relative to patrons of comparison stores, patrons of intervention stores demonstrated more favourable perceptions of corner stores and increased purchasing of F&V during that store visit. Changes were not detected in store patronage, percentage of weekly dollars spent on food for F&V or daily consumption of F&V.
Consistent with some extant food environment literature, findings demonstrate limited effects. Investments should be made in multilevel, comprehensive interventions that target a variety retail food outlets rather than focusing on corner stores exclusively. Complementary policies limiting the availability, affordability and marketing of energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods should also be pursued.
To introduce the concept ‘nutrition activation’ (the use of health and nutrition information when making food and diet decisions) and to assess the extent to which nutrition activation varies across racial/ethnic groups and explains dietary disparities.
Cross-sectional sample representative of adults in the USA. Primary outcome measures include daily energy intake and consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB), fast foods and sit-down restaurant foods as determined by two 24 h dietary recalls. We use bivariate statistics and multiple logistic and linear regression analyses to assess racial/ethnic disparities in nutrition activation and food behaviour outcomes.
Adult participants (n 7825) in the 2007–2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
Nutrition activation varies across racial/ethnic groups and is a statistically significant predictor of SSB, fast-food and restaurant-food consumption and daily energy intake. Based on the sample distribution, an increase from the 25th to 75th percentile in nutrition activation is associated with a decline of about 377 kJ (90 kcal)/d. Increased nutrition activation is associated with a larger decline in SSB consumption among whites than among blacks and foreign-born Latinos. Fast-food consumption is associated with a larger ‘spike’ in daily energy intake among blacks (+1582 kJ (+378 kcal)/d) than among whites (+678 kJ (+162 kcal)/d).
Nutrition activation is an important but understudied determinant of energy intake and should be explicitly incorporated into obesity prevention interventions, particularly among racial/ethnic minorities.
Weight self-perceptions, or how a person perceives his/her weight status, may affect weight outcomes. We use nationally representative data from 1988–1994 and 1999–2008 to examine racial/ethnic disparities in weight self-perceptions and understand how disparities have changed over time.
Using data from two time periods, 1988–1994 and 1999–2008, we calculated descriptive statistics, multivariate logistic regression models and predicted probabilities to examine trends in weight self-perceptions among Whites, Blacks, US-born Mexican Americans and Mexican immigrants to the USA.
National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) III (1988–1994) and continuous NHANES (1999–2008).
Adult NHANES participants aged 18 years and older (n 37 050).
The likelihood of self-classifying as overweight declined between 1988–1994 and 1999–2008 among all US adults, despite significant increases in mean BMI and overweight prevalence. Trends in weight self-perceptions varied by gender and between racial/ethnic groups. Whites in both time periods were more likely than racial/ethnic minorities to perceive themselves as overweight. After adjustment for other factors, disparities in weight self-perceptions between Whites and Blacks of both genders grew between survey periods (P<0·05), but differences between overweight White women and Mexican immigrants decreased (P<0·05).
Weight self-perceptions have changed during the obesity epidemic in the USA, but changes have not been consistent across racial/ethnic groups. Secular declines in the likelihood of self-classifying as overweight, particularly among Blacks, are troubling because weight self-perceptions may affect weight-loss efforts and obesity outcomes.
Previous studies have established that acculturation is associated with dietary intake among Mexican immigrants and their offspring, but few studies have investigated whether food purchasing, food preparation or food-related values act as mechanisms of dietary acculturation. We examine the relationship between language use and a wide range of food behaviours and food-related values among Mexican-American adults.
Nationally representative probability sample of the US population.
2005–2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
Mexican-American adults (n 2792) at least 20 years of age.
Mexican Americans who speak only or mostly English consume more energy from fast-food and sit-down restaurants and report increased consumption of non-homemade meals, fast-food and pizza meals, frozen meals and ready-to-eat meals relative to Spanish speakers. English speakers prepare one fewer homemade dinner per week and spend less time on meal preparation. English speakers are more likely than Spanish speakers to cite convenience as an important reason why they prefer fast food over cooking at home. There is no relationship between language use and the perceived importance of the nutritional quality, price or taste of fast food.
Our results provide evidence that the well-documented relationship between acculturation and diet among Mexican Americans may be just one indicator of a broader pattern characterized by decreased home meal preparation and increased reliance on convenience foods.
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