Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Food and Nutrition

First Advisor

Peterson, Dr. Sharon


AN ABSTRACT OF THE THESIS OF Rebecca Startzer, for the Master of Science degree in Community Nutrition, presented on November 6, 2008, at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. TITLE: A PILOT STUDY ON THE EFFECT OF A COMMUNITY-BASED LIFESTYLE INTERVENTION FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS WHO ARE "AT RISK" FOR TYPE 2 DIABETES MAJOR PROFESSOR: Dr. Sharon Peterson The prevalence of childhood Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) has increased by 33% over the last 15 years (Kaufman, 2002). With the growing number of adolescents with T2DM, it is important to identify adolescents who are "at risk" for T2DM and develop programs to help delay or prevent T2DM. Our pilot study, "R .U. A. Healthy Kid?" sought to examine the relationship of middle school students "at risk" for T2DM and lifestyle factors, including family meals, physical activity, and "screen time" in an effort to reduce their risk through a community-based intervention. At baseline a significant negative correlation was found between "screen time" levels and fruit (p= 0.041) and vegetable (p = 0.046) intake and a significant positive correlation between "screen time" levels and physical activity levels (p=0.006). At three months, a significant positive correlation was found between family meals at home and vegetable intake increased (p=0.024) and a significant positive correlation between family meal frequency increased and physical activity levels (p=0.047). From baseline to three months, frequency of family meals at home decreased (p=0.021). From this study, it could be concluded that improving "at risk" adolescent's behaviors related to family meals, physical activity, and "screen time" levels are critical while developing successful interventions for adolescents "at risk" for T2DM.




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