Filter and Sort


Impact of an Educational Campaign on College Students' Food Waste Intentions and Behaviors

Type: Undergraduate
Author(s): Annie Kate Genasci Nutritional Sciences Chandler Dalton Nutritional Sciences
Advisor(s): Gina Jarman Hill Nutritional Sciences
Location: Session: 1; 2nd Floor; Table Number: 1

poster location

Background: Approximately 40% of food produced in the U.S. is wasted. Consumers are responsible for the largest portion of food waste. The average college student generates ~142 pounds of food waste/year. The purposes of this research were to measure the impact of an educational food waste campaign on 1) actual food waste behaviors on a college campus and 2) students’ knowledge, beliefs, perception of referent others and social acceptability, attitude, subjective norm and intensions related to food waste.
Methods: An electronic food waste survey was developed. The Institutional Review Board approved this study. Food waste volume was measured by food service employees at breakfast for five days both before and after a food waste educational campaign. A convenience sample of participants provided consent prior to survey completion before and after the educational campaign. Data were coded into and analyzed using SPSS 24.
Results: Breakfast food waste totaled 610 quarts for the 7226 people served in ten days. Food waste per person was not significantly different pre/post-campaign. Approximately 0.076 and 0.10 quarts of breakfast food waste per person were measured pre/post-campaign respectively. Participants completed pre- (N=86) and post-campaign surveys (N=78). Total knowledge scores did not significantly change following the educational campaign. Knowledge regarding dating labels improved significantly (p<0.001). About 56% (N=47) and ~49% (N=38) participants reported often throwing away food from their refrigerators or pantries because use-by or sell-by dates had passed on pre/post-campaign surveys, respectively.
Discussion: Participants reported positive intentions to avoid food waste on both pre/post-campaign surveys. Knowledge regarding food waste remained low following the educational campaign. Additionally, almost two-thirds of participants did not agree that most people think food waste is a problem.


Relationship Between Water Consumption & Overall Skin Health in Individuals 18-24 Years of Age

Type: Undergraduate
Author(s): Katie Keatley Nutritional Sciences Vivian Castillo Nutritional Sciences Ashley Peek Nutritional Sciences
Advisor(s): Rebecca Dority Nutritional Sciences
Location: Session: 2; 3rd Floor; Table Number: 3

poster location

Background: Water is an essential component of the skin cells. Research suggests that lack of proper hydration causes skin to become dry, tight, and less resilient. A recent study showed that an increase in water intake has a positive correlation with skin appearance, especially in those who had inadequate water intake to begin with. However, opposing research studies have found that there are too many external factors to glorify water intake as the main contributor to skin appearance.

Purpose/Objective: To determine the effects of water consumption on skin complexion.

Methods: An online survey, regarding skin type, skin care processes, medications, physical activity, and fluid and dietary intake, was developed to evaluate the relationship between water intake and skin health. Researchers recruited Texas Christian University student participants using email and social media. Once the survey sample of 105 participants was met, data was analyzed using SPSS.

Results: Upon surveying participants (N=105), there were strong correlations (p<0.01), between skin type and fruit servings, skin type and yogurt consumption, and skin type and alcohol intake. There was also a strong correlation (p<0.01) among those who consumed water and additional healthy habits, such as higher fruit, vegetable, and yogurt consumption, and higher amounts of moderate or vigorous exercise. Approximately 24% (n=25) of the respondents mentioned that their skin appearance changes due to many factors including weather, medications, stress, dehydration, makeup, or menstrual cycle. There were no significant relationships between water intake and skin satisfaction or water intake and acne.

Conclusions: While water provides many benefits, other factors likely contribute to optimum skin health. Those who reported drinking more water had healthier habits overall, including exercising and consuming fruits, vegetables, and yogurt, which implies that further assessment is needed to determine which of these factors impact skin appearance and satisfaction.


The Correlation Between the Addition of a Condiment and Plate Waste in an Elementary School Meal Program Serving Students Ages 5-12

Type: Undergraduate
Author(s): Samantha Lane Nutritional Sciences Sarah Timmer Nutritional Sciences
Advisor(s): Rebecca Dority Nutritional Sciences
Location: Session: 1; 1st Floor; Table Number: 7

poster location

Background: There have been many food waste studies done in elementary schools around the country. Several studies have determined that main entrées contribute significantly to plate waste in elementary school food programs, but studies relating the use of condiments and their influence on food waste need further exploration.
Objectives: Determine the correlation between the addition of condiments and the amount of plate waste from a chicken entrée.
Methods: In Phase I, data was collected in an elementary afterschool meal program. Researchers evaluated plate waste for the chicken entrée once a week for a total of four weeks. Chicken entrée plate waste was evaluated by weight and visual assessment. The waste weight was compared to the weight of one serving of the chicken entrée. A photograph of the total plate waste was taken each week for visual comparison. Researchers compared the total number of servings prepared to the number of servings leftover. In Phase II of the study a condiment (ketchup) was added to the menu when the chicken entrée was served. A marketing campaign was implemented with flyers to advertise the addition of the condiment. For the remaining four weeks, plate waste was documented using the same methods utilized during Phase I.
Results: In Phase I, an average of 26.7% of chicken entrées was wasted. In Phase II, an average of 20.8% of chicken entrées was wasted. No statistically significant difference was found in the percentage of food leftover between Phase I and Phase II (p<0.06). After adjusting for differences in initial portion size, there was still no statistically significant difference in weight of entrée left over (p<0.3).
Conclusion: Though there was no significant difference, the amount of waste is large enough to draw attention to the problem of waste in school foodservice. More research is necessary to determine what factors are leading to food waste.

View Poster


Determination of the Impact of a Culinary Medicine Nutrition Education Program on Dietary Behaviors, Meal Preparation, and Nutritional Knowledge of Cancer Survivors

Type: Undergraduate
Author(s): Maddie Settle Nutritional Sciences Maeson Wampler Nutritional Sciences
Advisor(s): Gina Hill Nutritional Sciences
Location: Session: 2; 3rd Floor; Table Number: 8

poster location

A healthy diet and physical activity can help manage weight and reduce the risk of cancer recurrence. Research reveals that cancer survivors want information regarding cancer therapy side effect management and how to consume a balanced diet. According to previous research, nutrition education should improve nutrition knowledge, quality of life, confidence, and motivation to make positive lifestyle changes. The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of a six-week culinary medicine nutrition education program on nutritional knowledge, motivation to make lifestyle changes, and self-efficacy of cancer survivors.

Participants provided informed consent prior to completing initial and final surveys evaluating nutritional history, dietary and physical activity behaviors, and nutrition knowledge. Data were coded and analyzed using SPSS 24.

Participants (N = 21) were 56.8+/-9.9 years of age. Although no significant difference was detected between initial and final nutrition knowledge scores, participants’ confidence scores preparing meals improved significantly from 0.89 to 1.56 (p≤0.05). Participants reported a significant increase in daily vegetable intake from 1.73 to 2.63 servings/day (p≤0.05).

The lack of improvement in average knowledge scores could be attributed to inconsistent participant attendance throughout the six-week course and survey knowledge questions that did not focus on topics discussed in-depth during the course. The demonstration and hands-on cooking portion of the course positively impacted participants’ confidence and motivation to make healthy changes. Meal preparation confidence increased significantly with all participants stating they agreed/strongly agreed in feeling confident preparing meals in the final survey. Almost 100% of participants reported that they intend to make dietary changes and 100% would implement what they learned in the class into their lives. Study limitations include a small sample size and frequently skipped survey questions. Further research is needed to determine best practices to improve nutrition knowledge for cancer survivors in this setting.



Type: Undergraduate
Author(s): Melissa Simons Nutritional Sciences Jaclynn Clay Nutritional Sciences Grace Niestrom Nutritional Sciences Erin Owen Nutritional Sciences
Advisor(s): Anne Vanbeber Nutritional Sciences Lyn Dart Nutritional Sciences
Location: Session: 1; B0; Table Number: 13

poster location

Learning Outcome: To examine differences in pizza portion sizes based on variations and lack of standardization of total weight, diameter, and individual slices.

Background: Supersized food portions were introduced in the U.S. during the 1970s. Since then the obesity epidemic has spiked, suggesting larger portion sizes and prevalence of obesity may be related. Because of this trend in larger portion sizes, experts agree that many people tend to overestimate the appropriate amount of food they should consume. The purpose of this study was to examine and compare pizza portion sizes from different local establishments.

Study Design: Nine large cheese pizzas and five personal size cheese pizzas were purchased from various restaurants in Fort Worth, Texas. Pizzerias were selected based on customer reviews designated by ratings, including five pizzerias with high ratings, four pizzerias with average ratings, and five pizzerias with low ratings. Pizza measurements were recorded for total weight, diameter, weight of the largest and smallest slices, and total cost of each pizza. Data was analyzed to meet study objectives (SPSS, P<0.05).

Results: A wide variance in recorded measures and lack of standardization was noted among the nine large size pizzas, including total weight (458-1585 gm), diameter (12.8-17.5 in), weight of largest slice (54-266 gm), weight of smallest slice (20-116 gm), and total cost of the pizza ($10.81-$19.47). Except for a smaller variance in total weight (204-380 gm), the five personal-size pizzas showed similar wide differences in diameter (6.25-12.25 in) and total cost ($4.33-$11.91). Total weight, diameter, and cost were also correlated positively in both the personal-size and large pizzas. In contrast to large size pizzas, personal-size pizzas showed a positive correlation between pizza diameter and low-to-high customer review ratings.

Conclusions: Results suggest a lack of standardized portion sizes among different large size and personal size pizzas. Posting calories and other nutrient information about pizza portion sizes can fill a critical information gap and help consumers make informed and healthful dietary choices.


Examination of Trends in Coconut Oil Consumption and How this Impacts Product Merchandising in Area Grocery Stores

Type: Undergraduate
Author(s): Gabriela Zeagler Nutritional Sciences Tara Martinez Nutritional Sciences
Advisor(s): Rebecca Dority Nutritional Sciences
Location: Session: 1; B0; Table Number: 12

poster location

Background: Recent research indicates that coconut oil consumption has increased in popularity due to a variety of perceived health benefits. Although the actual health benefits of coconut oil continue to be a topic of controversy, sales of the oil have increased radically. Product shelf placement has been shown to impact grocery item sales, with many sellers placing popular or desired products at eye level to attract buyers.

Objective: The objective of this study was to determine if the increased popularity of coconut oil impacts price and grocery store shelving placement relative to other popular oils.

Design and Methods: Researchers selected 6 different local grocery stores that varied in type of market, target population, and geographic location. Data was collected for 4 popular oils: coconut, olive, canola, and vegetable. At each store, researchers documented the total number of brands for each of the four oils, their individual price per fluid ounce, and whether the oil was placed above eye level, at eye level, or below eye level. Photos were taken of each of the shelving units. Data was analyzed using Microsoft Excel.

Results: There was no statistical correlation between type of oil with shelving location nor with price per ounce and shelving location. There was a statistically significant difference (p<0.05) between the average price of coconut oil compared to canola and vegetable oils. Four out of the six stores included in the study had a moderate to high positive correlation between price per ounce and the percentage of each type of oil carried in the store.

Conclusions: Researchers noted trends related to higher price per ounce, eye level shelf placement, and increased amount of advertisements for coconut oil. There was a statistically significant difference between the average price per ounce of coconut oil compared to canola and vegetable oils, which supports the observations made. However, it is believed that there was no statistical correlation between the price per ounce, or type of oil, with shelving location since some of the stores had large oil selections that required placement of oils across multiple shelves. Additionally, stores appeared to have placed oils on different shelves depending on their target market of shoppers. Stores with a lower income target population placed coconut oil on the top shelves and carried less of the product, overall. Stores with a higher income target population placed coconut oil at eye level, had increased amount of the oil in stock, and had advertisements for the oil located on the shelving unit. Future research on the subject should limit location selections to one target market to eliminate this variable.