Consumer research for development of educational messages for the mypyramid food guidance system.
Sommaire de l'article
OBJECTIVE: To assess consumer understanding and use of messages from the original Food Guide Pyramid and potential concepts for a revised Food Guidance System. DESIGN: Focus groups conducted in two phases, in 2002 and 2004. SETTING: Market research facilities in Baltimore, Chicago, and Houston. PARTICIPANTS: Phase I, 178 participants in 18 groups: 6 of general adult consumers, 4 of adults over 60 years of age, 4 of food stamp recipients, and 4 of overweight adults. Phase II, 75 participants in 8 groups: 4 of younger adults and 4 of older adults. PHENOMENON OF INTEREST: Understanding and use of original Pyramid symbol and messages and potential concepts for a revised food guidance system. ANALYSIS: Focus group sessions were audiotaped and transcribed. Content analysis summarized comments into meaningful themes. RESULTS: Key concepts of the original Pyramid were widely understood, but specific knowledge was limited and misunderstandings common, especially related to servings and food group placement. Detailed information about whole grains, types of fats, vegetable subgroups, and physical activity was lacking. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: While consumers are aware of general concepts about healthy eating, they lack specific knowledge to help them implement recommendations. Educators can help by providing consumers with concrete examples and specific information.