Literature Review Write Up with Cover Page Essay

4076 Words Nov 4th, 2010 17 Pages
Vending Machine Food Environment Assessment

Literature Review

Erin Fitzharris University of Iowa-School of Public Health Susan Klein Iowa State University Extension Carol Voss Iowa Department of Public Health Fit for Life Program Summer 2008

The food environment has only recently been studied as an important contributor to the dietary decisions people make every day; decisions which ultimately impact both short- and long-term health outcomes. The built environment, or the surroundings we create for the places we live, work, shop, and so on, impacts the nutrition environment, which includes the external cues that influence one’s food choices and consumption (Sallis & Glanz, 2006). Generally, the nutrition environment in the
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Today, soft drink vending machines are available in 98% of U.S. high schools (HendelPaterson, French, & Story, 2004), and ‘competitive foods,’ or those sold outside of the school lunch, either through vending machines, schools stores, canteens, or snack bars, are available in 32.7% of elementary schools, 71.3% of middle schools, and 89.4% of high schools (CDC, 2006).


A large number of schools are providing students with alternatives to traditional school lunches by way of vending machines or à la carte options, and this environmental change is having an impact on students’ dietary behaviors. Neumark-Sztainer and others (2005) revealed that the more vending machines found in a school, the higher the number of student snack food purchases. Additionally, research suggests that, in the school setting, vending machine options are displacing students’ fruit consumption. Kubik and colleagues (2003) found that, with each snack vending machine available, students’ intake of fruit decreased by 11%; à la carte options were negatively associated with students’ intake of fruits and fruits and vegetables. Recent surveys of parents of school age children indicate they are concerned about the impact of vending machines in schools on children’s health. A survey of parents in Ohio found that 51% preferred their children only have access to vending machines stocked with healthy foods, while 42% preferred that their children have no access to vending

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