Evaluation of the effectiveness of the Food Steps healthy eating program

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Burgess, Tammy
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University of Guelph

This thesis investigated the application of the FOOD STEPS program, designed to reduce dietary fat intake among mobile and stationary workers in Hamilton, Ontario. One hundred and sixty-nine participants from four worksites completed a self-administered registration form and questionnaires at baseline and after six-months. Two intervention worksites; received the FOOD STEPS program, and two comparison worksites, received handout information either through the mail or from their worksite. The majority of respondents for both intervention and comparison maintenance for reducing dietary fat at all three measurement periods. There were no significant differences found between intervention and comparison sites in participant age, gender or stage of change at any time point. Six-month follow-up surveys revealed no significant progression through the stages of change or improvements to self-efficacy or decisional balance for either treatment or comparison groups. Results suggest that the FOOD STEPS program may be an inappropriate program in itself to improve dietary behaviours. Improved methods of program promotion are needed to attract more participants in the pre-action stages of change, who could benefit most from the FOOD STEPS program.

Food Steps, Healthy eating, Hamilton, Reducing dietary fat, Intervention