Differences in dietary behaviors based on adolescent perceptions of healthfulness of diet
This study examined the difference in dietary behaviors of adolescents by perceived healthfulness of diet. Participants were 391 students between the ages of 12 and 17 years in the Houston area. Participants completed a questionnaire including demographic and anthropometric data, food frequency questions, and a question on perceived dietary healthfulness. Dietary behaviors based on food frequency responses were compared by categories of perceived healthfulness of diet using analysis of covariance (ANCOVA). Results with p < .05 were defined as statistically significant. Participants with high perceived healthfulness had higher mean intakes of fruits and vegetables and a lower mean intake of sugar sweetened beverages than participants with the same or low perceived healthfulness of diet. Participants with high perceived healthfulness had higher mean intakes of milk than participants with the same perceived healthfulness of diet. Further research is needed to expand on the limited data available regarding adolescents' perceived dietary healthfulness.