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How do we improve adolescent diet and physical activity in India and sub-Saharan Africa? Findings from the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition (TALENT) consortium

How do we improve adolescent diet and physical activity in India and sub-Saharan Africa? Findings from the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition (TALENT) consortium
How do we improve adolescent diet and physical activity in India and sub-Saharan Africa? Findings from the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition (TALENT) consortium
Objective:
Adolescent diet, physical activity and nutritional status are generally known to be sub-optimal. This is an introduction to a special issue of papers devoted to exploring factors affecting diet and physical activity in adolescents, including food insecure and vulnerable groups.

Setting
Eight settings including urban, peri-urban and rural across sites from five different low- and middle-income countries.

Design:
Focus groups with adolescents and caregivers carried out by trained researchers.

Results:
Our results show that adolescents, even in poor settings, know about healthy diet and lifestyles. They want to have energy, feel happy, look good and live longer, but their desire for autonomy, a need to ‘belong’ in their peer group, plus vulnerability to marketing exploiting their aspirations, leads them to make unhealthy choices. They describe significant gender, culture and context-specific barriers. For example, urban adolescents had easy access to energy dense, unhealthy foods bought outside the home, whereas junk foods were only beginning to permeate rural sites. Among adolescents in Indian sites, pressure to excel in exams meant that academic studies were squeezing out physical activity time.

Conclusions:
Interventions to improve adolescents’ diets and physical activity levels must therefore address structural and environmental issues and influences in their homes and schools, since it is clear that their food and activity choices are the product of an interacting complex of factors. In the next phase of work, the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition consortium will employ groups of adolescents, caregivers and local stakeholders in each site to develop interventions to improve adolescent nutritional status.
Adolescent, Health, Low- and middle-income countries, Nutrition, Physical activity
1368-9800
Barker, M.E.
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Hardy-Johnson, P.
49276c2f-01a9-4488-9f30-dc359cf867e0
Weller, S.
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Haileamalak, A.
3073992e-b058-429d-8be4-fae4d705acf1
Jarju, L.
02f93164-0719-4e7a-afc7-0abb32ab5583
Jesson, J.
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Krishnaveni, G. V.
eb73f522-17b0-4aa9-a7c7-df0014ced8c3
Kumaran, K.
de6f872c-7339-4a52-be84-e3bbae707744
Leroy, V.
68142e0f-ac97-4025-8a7f-ca143b93b50f
Moore, S.E.
bea65f65-3f11-45cd-96d2-c088a18ccc55
Norris, S.A.
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Patil, S.
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Sahariah, S.A.
617c5c15-97be-45e8-8529-a5f306dbccf3
Ward, K.
39bd4db1-c948-4e32-930e-7bec8deb54c7
Yajnik, C.S.
b5419624-c567-4b5a-a021-e68f48abee6c
Fall, C.H.D
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TALENT collaboration
Barker, M.E.
374310ad-d308-44af-b6da-515bf5d2d6d2
Hardy-Johnson, P.
49276c2f-01a9-4488-9f30-dc359cf867e0
Weller, S.
6ad1e079-1a7c-41bf-8678-bff11c55142b
Haileamalak, A.
3073992e-b058-429d-8be4-fae4d705acf1
Jarju, L.
02f93164-0719-4e7a-afc7-0abb32ab5583
Jesson, J.
edc01484-5b0b-44a5-8a91-1287aefdfe7a
Krishnaveni, G. V.
eb73f522-17b0-4aa9-a7c7-df0014ced8c3
Kumaran, K.
de6f872c-7339-4a52-be84-e3bbae707744
Leroy, V.
68142e0f-ac97-4025-8a7f-ca143b93b50f
Moore, S.E.
bea65f65-3f11-45cd-96d2-c088a18ccc55
Norris, S.A.
8e447b41-9493-4491-86bc-e7a9e72ef23b
Patil, S.
4ca3ce76-66bb-43c1-827e-11038ab5a0de
Sahariah, S.A.
617c5c15-97be-45e8-8529-a5f306dbccf3
Ward, K.
39bd4db1-c948-4e32-930e-7bec8deb54c7
Yajnik, C.S.
b5419624-c567-4b5a-a021-e68f48abee6c
Fall, C.H.D
7171a105-34f5-4131-89d7-1aa639893b18

Barker, M.E., Hardy-Johnson, P., Weller, S., Haileamalak, A., Jarju, L., Jesson, J., Krishnaveni, G. V., Kumaran, K., Leroy, V., Moore, S.E., Norris, S.A., Patil, S., Sahariah, S.A., Ward, K., Yajnik, C.S. and Fall, C.H.D , TALENT collaboration (2020) How do we improve adolescent diet and physical activity in India and sub-Saharan Africa? Findings from the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition (TALENT) consortium. Public Health Nutrition. (doi:10.1017/S1368980020002244).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Objective:
Adolescent diet, physical activity and nutritional status are generally known to be sub-optimal. This is an introduction to a special issue of papers devoted to exploring factors affecting diet and physical activity in adolescents, including food insecure and vulnerable groups.

Setting
Eight settings including urban, peri-urban and rural across sites from five different low- and middle-income countries.

Design:
Focus groups with adolescents and caregivers carried out by trained researchers.

Results:
Our results show that adolescents, even in poor settings, know about healthy diet and lifestyles. They want to have energy, feel happy, look good and live longer, but their desire for autonomy, a need to ‘belong’ in their peer group, plus vulnerability to marketing exploiting their aspirations, leads them to make unhealthy choices. They describe significant gender, culture and context-specific barriers. For example, urban adolescents had easy access to energy dense, unhealthy foods bought outside the home, whereas junk foods were only beginning to permeate rural sites. Among adolescents in Indian sites, pressure to excel in exams meant that academic studies were squeezing out physical activity time.

Conclusions:
Interventions to improve adolescents’ diets and physical activity levels must therefore address structural and environmental issues and influences in their homes and schools, since it is clear that their food and activity choices are the product of an interacting complex of factors. In the next phase of work, the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition consortium will employ groups of adolescents, caregivers and local stakeholders in each site to develop interventions to improve adolescent nutritional status.

Text
TALENT introductory paper_Public Health Nutrition revised version - Accepted Manuscript
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 12 June 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 28 October 2020
Keywords: Adolescent, Health, Low- and middle-income countries, Nutrition, Physical activity

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 444858
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/444858
ISSN: 1368-9800
PURE UUID: 8b25b914-40c7-4b39-91a6-93e33eb966d9
ORCID for M.E. Barker: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-2976-0217
ORCID for S. Weller: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6839-876X
ORCID for K. Ward: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7034-6750
ORCID for C.H.D Fall: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-4402-5552

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 06 Nov 2020 17:33
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 03:05

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Contributors

Author: M.E. Barker ORCID iD
Author: P. Hardy-Johnson
Author: S. Weller ORCID iD
Author: A. Haileamalak
Author: L. Jarju
Author: J. Jesson
Author: G. V. Krishnaveni
Author: K. Kumaran
Author: V. Leroy
Author: S.E. Moore
Author: S.A. Norris
Author: S. Patil
Author: S.A. Sahariah
Author: K. Ward ORCID iD
Author: C.S. Yajnik
Author: C.H.D Fall ORCID iD
Corporate Author: TALENT collaboration

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