Hawai‘i Nutrition Education Needs Assessment

Susan Saka, Morris Lai, and Sandy Shimabukuro led a four-year study on the nutritional habits and height and weight of fourth and tenth graders in Hawai‘i. This study is the third installment in a longitudinal study that has looked at similar issues every ten years. Collecting data on students’ diets, feelings about school lunch, levels of physical activity, and height and weight, the team was able to create a nutrition needs assessment report for Hawai‘i students. The study found a low mean energy intake by students in the current study as compared to the previous studies. There was a low consumption of fruits and vegetables and dairy products and a frequent consumption of sweetened beverages and candy. About one fifth of the students were classified as overweight and three fifths were in the healthy range.