Availability and Accessibility of Fruit and Vegetable in Home and School for Iranian Students: A Cross-sectional Research in Schools of Tehran, Iran

Authors

1 Environmental and Occupational Hazards Control Research Center, Department of Public Health, School of Public Health and Safety, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

2 Environmental and Occupational Hazards Control Research Center, Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Safety, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

Abstract

Background: Availability and accessibilityarereported as the main determinants of fruit and vegetable consumption among children. The present study was conducted to assess the status of availability and accessibilityto fruit and vegetable at school and home among Iranian adolescents in Tehran, Iran.
Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted to assess status of fruit and vegetable availability and accessibilityamong Iranian adolescents. In this study, 500 adolescents aged 11 to 14 years old were investigated in Tehran, Iran. Subjects were chosen by multi-stage random sampling method. The data collection tool was a valid researcher-made questionnaire consist of 21 questions. The data was analyzed using SPSS software version 16.0.
Results
68% (n=344) and 27.2% (n=136) of students reported that fruit and vegetables is available in their home always, respectively. Also, 19.6% (n=98), and 58.4% (n=292) of students reported that most of the times and always unhealthy foods were sold in schools’ buffets, respectively; 88% (n=440) of students declared that they are allowed to take fruit and vegetable from the refrigerator and eat any time they want to. Results showed no significant difference between boys and girls in terms of availability and accessibility(P=0.268). In addition, there was a significant relationship between variables of residential area, family and home size, birth order and the parents’ education level and availability and accessibility (P<0.05).
Conclusion: Fruit and vegetable availability and accessibility was not acceptable yet among guidance school students in Tehran.It is recommended to implement proper interventions for families, school managers as well as students to promote availability and accessibilityof fruit and especially vegetable for adolescents. 

Keywords