School-based intervention with children. Peer-modeling, reward and repeated exposure reduce food neophobia and increase liking of fruits and vegetables.
Sommaire de l'article
This study investigated the effectiveness of the 'Food Dudes' school-based intervention consisting of rewards, peer-modeling and food exposure on food neophobia and the liking of fruits and vegetables (FV) in a large cohort of children. Five-hundred sixty children recruited from three schools were assigned to the experimental or control group. For 16 days, children in the experimental group watched motivational videos, were read letters to encourage them to eat FV and received a small reward for eating one portion of both a fruit and a vegetable. The control group was only provided with FV for the same time period. Food neophobia and liking were measured in both groups of children before and after the intervention, and a follow-up measurement was carried out 6 months later. The intervention was effective in reducing food neophobia and, most importantly, a persistent effect was observed 6 months after the intervention as children of the experimental group showed significantly lower neophobia scores than the control group. Additionally, the program was effective in increasing liking for both FV; however, this effect was maintained only for fruit after 6 months.