Determinants of adolescent snacking behavior
Silvis, Katherine Allen
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Adolescence is an important time both physically and socially. Many adolescents have the opportunity for greater freedom of food selection, particularly snacks. Two schools in the Gwinnett County School System agreed to participate in a study designed to identify and describe factors that impact the snacking behaviors of middle school students. The study was conducted in 2 phases. Phase I consisted of focus groups and survey design, and Phase II consisted of survey implementation and collection of 3-day food diaries. The survey (n=148) and 3-day food diaries (n=60) were used to measure the contribution of snacks to total dietary intake and the factors influencing snack selection. Internal factors such as body image and external factors such as indirect parental influence, media influence, and peer influence were shown to be related to snacking behavior.