Details and acceptability of a nutrition intervention programme designed to improve the contents of childrens packed lunches

Christine L. Cleghorn, Charlotte E.L. Evans, Meaghan S. Kitchen, Janet E. Cade

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To describe the Smart Lunch Box intervention and provide details on feedback from the participants on the acceptability and usability of the intervention materials. Design: A cluster randomised controlled trial, randomised by school. English schools were stratified on percentage free-school-meals eligibility and attainment at Key Stage 2. A 'Smart Lunch Box' with supporting materials and activities on healthy eating was delivered to parents and children via schools in the intervention group. Feedback forms containing information on a total of fifteen intervention items were filled out by the parents and/or children participating in the intervention and were collected after each of the three phases of the intervention.Setting Eighty-nine primary schools in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, randomly selected; forty-four schools in the intervention arm.Subjects A total of 1294 children, aged 9-10 years, took part in the trial. Of the 604 children in the intervention arm, 343 provided feedback after at least one of the three phases. Results: A median of twelve items out of a total of fifteen were used by responders. The two intervention items most likely to be used were the individual food boxes and the cooler bags. Whether a participant liked an item significantly affected whether they used it for all items except the cooler bag, fruity face and individual food boxes. Conclusions: Practical intervention items aimed at parents are likely to be used in the longer term and therefore may be appropriate for use in an intervention strategy to improve packed lunches.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1254-1261
Number of pages8
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Children
  • Dietary intervention
  • Healthy
  • Packed lunch

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