A Model Development to Reduce Sugar, Salt and Fat by the Children and Youth Council Leaders of a Suburban Community in Thailand

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Suwat Srisorrachatr, Anantawit Watcharothai, Puangpen Chantprasert, Vipa Pengsaium

Abstract

Non-communicable diseases are an important problem in Thailand, especially among children which saw a rapid increase. Changing eating behaviors from childhood to adolescence, by reducing sugar, salt, and fat consumption, and performing exercises can prevent these NCDs. As a society with modern communication technology, people are induced to consume unhealthy foods and have a sedentary lifestyle. Phetchaburi province is renowned for its sweet desserts, and desserts can cause obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. But the children and youth council leaders in the area are determined to change eating behaviors in the community. This quasi-experimental design aimed to develop a model to change eating behaviors among people and its evaluated outcome. The design includes training for knowledge transfer activities, creating healthy menus in restaurants, and a performance video clip with net idols as a change agent. The target group consisted of 50 youth leaders and 818 respondents. The results found that youth leaders gained knowledge from the training and could transfer healthy eating knowledge through multimedia, and there were 125 teenagers who followed the net idols. At the end of the project, the daily vegetable eating behavior increased to 90.8%. However, the behavior of adding sugar and salt in food were high at 73.1%, 52.2% of adults still drank coffee and tea more than 3 days a week, and convenience stores were a popular place for purchasing meals and snacks.

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