Foods and Nutrition
Coordinated Program in Dietetics
Multiple factors effect children’s capability to make healthy choices when it comes to food intake. A field of study pertaining to pediatric nutrition that has not been well studied relates to children’s modification of food intake in response to the meal served. The purpose of this repeated exposure, randomized, cross-over quasi-experimental study was to determine food preference and portion control in two-to-five year old children of Caucasian and Asian descent (n=23). The study had two within-subject factors (portion size of main course and timing of dessert) and was conducted in West Lafayette, Indiana, from January-April 2011. Whether children participated in the study or not, all children at the child care center were served two study lunches (fish or pasta, each with dessert) twice a week for 12 weeks. The two interventions were: a) an increased portion size by 50% and b) dessert being served with or after the main course. Analyses of variance conducted on energy intake from the main course and dessert at lunch yielded significant portion size x timing of dessert interactions. Serving dessert after the meal was associated with higher kilocalorie (kcal) consumption from the main course (73 versus 64 kcal, P=0.03), from dessert (90 versus 84 kcal, P=0.04), and as total intake at the meal (162 versus 148 kcal, P
I would like to thank the administrators, teachers, and parents of the Ben and Maxine Miller Child Development Laboratory School for their support for this study and the staff and students in the Kranz Lab who contributed to this study.
Herdzina-Huss, Lyndsey R., "Timing of Dessert but Not Portion Size Affects Young Children's Intake at Lunchtime" (2012). College of Health and Human Sciences Honors Program Undergraduate Theses. Paper 6.