Beverage Vending Purchasing Patterns and Attitudes in Southwest Virginia High School Students
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Purpose: This article examines changes in attitude and beverage consumption after a school-wide policy change replacing sweetened beverages in vending machines with 100% juice and bottled water.
Methods: Written questionnaires were administered three times to high school students (n = 278) in an ethnically-diverse, southwest Virginia school district. X Â² analysis was utilized and test-retest reliability was assessed with intra-class correlation coefficients.
Results: Pearson correlation coefficients for reliability between test and re-test displayed a range from r =0.53 to r =0.73. There were no significant differences in demographics (gender and ethnicity) between time periods. X Â² analysis revealed students were significantly more likely to choose healthier beverage vending options after one year compared to baseline (P<0.01). Although beverage vending purchases declined to near significance immediately following the change, there were no significant changes observed between baseline and follow-up (P<0.05). X Â² analysis revealed no significant (P<0.05) changes in outside purchase patterns. Students also indicated that the top reasons for snack/beverage choices were hunger, taste, and price.
Conclusion: This suggests that students purchase what is convenient and available, regardless of choices. Therefore, environmental changes may be beneficial to promote healthier beverage choices among adolescents.
- Masters Theses