A Pilot Study
By:"Meghan A. Wilneff"
Published on 2013 by
Abstract: The rate of lifestyle-related conditions and disease is disproportionately high among adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD); however, few health promotion programs target this population. The purpose of this study was to evaluate a nutrition and cooking education program by describing the participation within a sample of five adults with ID/DD and seven accompanying homecare staff. Participants attended a six week interactive pilot program focused on balanced nutrition and basic cooking skills. Data was collected through observational field notes, video-tapes and pre- and post-program participant interviews. The weekly nutrition lessons provided increased awareness of healthful eating and demonstrate a motivational phase of nutrition education. The action phase included weekly preparation of recipes, at-home challenges and grocery store tour. Participants were able to expand on their knowledge and demonstrate successful application. Lastly, participation of the homecare staff influenced environmental change. The limitations of this study include a small, convenience sample and the reliance of self-reported data and perceived observations by the note-taker. While the study was constrained by limitations, it offers information and developed themes that may set the groundwork for further research and development of health promotion for the ID/DD population. This study demonstrates evidence for promotion of healthy behavior changes and increasing knowledge among adults with DD/ID. Community healthcare professionals should consider development of additional health promotion programs targeted to DD/ID adults and their support systems. Longer-term programs may be helpful in influencing more permanent behavior change and could impact overall health outcomes.
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Abstract: The rate of lifestyle-related conditions and disease is disproportionately high among adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD); however, few health promotion programs target this population.