Nutritional Knowledge and Teaching Effectiveness in Disadvantaged Socioeconomic Areas

Nutritional Knowledge and Teaching Effectiveness in Disadvantaged Socioeconomic Areas 

Nutritional health is a critical topic of interest, and the lack of understanding of how it impacts children.  The appropriate information and resources for proper nutrition in a multi-cultural society is lacking in schools (Walsh, Dannhouser, & Joubert, 2003). As well as, the educators that do not fully comprehend how health and wellness behaviors are affected by surrounding socioeconomic areas. Childhood obesity is an epidemic in the country (U.S Department of Health and Human Services, 2018).

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Problem Statement

Health and wellness in the area of nutritional knowledge can have a major impact in reducing the rate of childhood obesity and the health risks linked with it. Nutrition is an integral part of life and without the proper educational environment, whether at school or home children will not be as healthy as they could be. Consequently, the absence of communication between schools and parents about nutrition is an area of concern. Most nutritional information that is built into the curriculums do not take into account the socioeconomic environment of their students (Brug, Kremers, Lenthe, Ball, & Crawford, 2008).


There needs to be a way of amending educational curriculums to provide a comprehensive nutrition educational plan, which enables a personalized nutritional behavior adjustment.  The goal is to achieve healthier lifestyles within disadvantaged socioeconomic areas. The curriculum may need to include ways to get parents involved, so that the information being learned can be practiced at home (Brug, Kremers, Lenthe, Ball, & Crawford, 2008). The goal is to find areas of consensus, in order to provide real life means to healthy nutrition. The reach of the study may need to include community nutritionist to provide guidance to the districts in most need, so parents have more choices to get the information needed to keep the children eating right. The primary objective of the review is to explore 1) the association between educator’s lack of nutritional knowledge and the impacts on child obesity. 2) to determine the effects of nutritional information currently being taught and the impacts in a low socioeconomic area.

Literature Review

Brug, Kremers, Lenthe, Ball, & Crawford (2008) performed a systemic review concerning behavioral determinants and nutritional intervention. Nutritional intervention that is localized are situational actions or activities, which have an effect on nutrition and health results (World Health Organization, 2019). The results of the study indicate that low socio-economic environmental factors have a higher impact on eating behaviors. These environments play a crucial role in shaping children’s eating habits. The researchers concluded that there needs to be cooperation with parents to reduce the amount of unhealthy food choices within the home. As well as, empowering the children with critical thinking about the problem and motivating them to create solutions.  Brug, Kremers, Lenthe, Ball, & Crawford (2008) indicated that the limitation to the study was a lack of well-defined research.

McDonald, Dawkins-Moultin, McWhinney, & McKyer (2016), examined the correlation between nutritional education and parental guidance. This was a qualitative study utilizing focus group. The main theme was determined to be the lack of nutritional education from both school and home. The researchers concluded that there is a need for a multicultural approach, to nutrition education. A multicultural approach is recognizing that culture has a strong impact on food intake, attitudes and behaviors (Sindler, 2001). Moreover, understanding and demonstrating multicultural proficiency requires sensitivity to cultural differences, and being able to apply nutrition knowledge to create healthier behaviors.

 Thomson & Robertson (2012) researched the nutritional curriculum policies in Canada to determine the degree of knowledge and coherence around health priorities for children. The study focused on the different ideas of instructions that were in place in the Canadian Provinces. There were many inconsistencies in philosophies and student outcomes. Additionally, they determined that there was a lack of communication between school, student, and parent. The study was intended to be used as a tool for knowledge utilization and an incentive for change.


Systematic review and meta-analysis are considered forms of evidence-based approach methodology. The evidence-based practice (EBP) is the process of incorporating the best evidentiary data available with “clinical expertise and client values” (Isacc & Franceschi, 2009). The Systematic review qualitative method will be used to answer the research questions, and subsequent meta-analyses will evaluate the data gathered from the multiple quantitative research studies (Littell, Corrcoran, & Pillai, 2008). The idea is to gather information that covers the topic entirely, whether it agrees or not with the hypothesis (Siddaway, 2018).

A meta-analysis involves the statistical pooling of similar quantitative studies including those found to have various degrees of significance. According to Glass (1976), Meta-analysis was developed to extract useful information from the cryptic information based upon evidence and reason from the data analysis of research from journals and other printed sources. Additionally, the aim of meta-analysis is to be able to scrutinize all the research and contribute to inclusionary and exclusionary criteria that also helps to regulate the mixing data that is too divergent (Littell, Corrcoran, & Pillai, 2008). This process has limitations that will need to be examined to ensure that the study clear and concise.

To avoid literature bias, studies that will be used will be from university libraries, peer-reviewed journal studies, and scholar web search engines (Borges & Garcia, 2017). It is important when conducting any research, particularly when using meta-analyses, that this bias be reduced as much as possible. Additionally, the study will have two or three collaborators to evaluate the studies being reviewed to minimize researcher bias (Borges & Garcia, 2017). This process of collaboration will assist in ensuring that the bias and limitations are lowered or eliminated.

Results and Discussion

The systematic review will be written in accordance with the recommended protocol set forth by the Campbell Collaboration (2001)The Campbell Collaboration systematic review procedure is believed to be the most widely-used and documented protocol for systematic reviews for social sciences (Cooper & Hedges, 2009). The systematic review provides a summary of the data results from the individual studies. A meta-analysis will combine the results from the individual studies and a summary and the estimate calculated (Dickson, Cherry, & Boland, 2013). The meta-analysis gives weighted values to each of the individual studies according to their size.  A chart or table will illustrate the results, that way the information can be visually understood.


Due to the significant implications of health risks due to childhood obesity if left without proper knowledge and understanding, future research needs to focus on determining effective education, throughout the developmental stages of childhood. The present study will attempt to extend the research base on effective interventions for childhood obesity. Moreover, the effectiveness of child-parent interventions for childhood nutrition behaviors will be promising. Additionally, studies that are already published research are vital to establish effectiveness. Future research also needs to exercise a methodological system of comprehensively collecting information that is inclusive to the multicultural society. Moreover, the goal is to help children and families change their nutritional behaviors, so it can become a long-term achievement. The idea is to give educators what they need to be able to provide for the proper education of children.


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