Differences in daily dietary intake between students who eat at least one meal in restaurants and students who don't eat in restaurants
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Studies indicate that eating away from home is associated with childhood obesity. This study examined the difference between away from home meals and home meals. Students aged 11-14 years old were recruited from four middle schools in the Houston area and completed four 24-hour recalls in 2008. They were divided into 2 groups by meal source: those who ate all meals at home and those who ate at least one meal away from home. Intakes were compared using ANOVA, and χ². The level of significance was P < 0.05. There were few differences between groups for micronutrient and macronutrient intakes, but students who consumed at least one meal away from home had lower quality intakes than the other group. Limitations include using one retrospective method to collect data, and the majority of students recruited being Hispanics and from low income families. Interventions that help youth select healthy food choices away from home are needed.