A Review of 2018

Posted by: Karen Chapman-Novakofski, PhD, RDN, LDN on Tuesday, December 4, 2018

A Review of 2018

Published in JNEB - January Issue

As we begin JNEB’s 51st volume, I wanted to look back at last year to provide some perspective on this year. Within the 50th volume, we had 5 articles being accessed more than 1,000 times between January 2018 and September 2018.  I think that is amazing and wanted to share a brief description.

McArthur et al’s article is titled Health Belief Model (HBM) Offers Opportunities for Designing Weight Management Interventions for College Students.1 This was a cross-sectional study investigating the weight-related beliefs of 516 undergraduates. The prevalence of overweight in this sample was 29.3%. The HBM did not have a robust predictive power on students’ body mass index (BMI), but several beliefs were interesting. For instance, cues to action were significantly inversely associated with BMIs. Incorporating more cues to action into daily college life in general, and weight management programs in particular, may enhance the effectiveness of such health promotions.

Gibbs et al’s article was an assessment tool validation study.2 They investigated the reliability and validity of the Nutrition Literacy Assessment Instrument in adult primary care. The instrument includes 6 subscales: nutrition and health, energy sources of food, food label and numeracy, household food measurement, food groups, and consumer skills. In addition to instrument evaluation, the authors assessed diet quality, and found the nutrition literacy was the most significant predictor of diet quality. It occurs to me that this instrument might be useful in evaluating the nutrition literacy of college students, since weight management continues to be an issue.

Christoph et al’s article was also a cross-sectional study in which young adults (n=1,817) were queried about nutrition facts usage and weight-related behaviors.3 Gender differences were found, and label use was associated both with healthy and unhealthy eating behavior. For women, Nutrition Facts use was associated with a higher likelihood of binge eating. Not that label usage is bad, but care perhaps should be taken with those with high usage of Nutrition Facts in order to evaluate the possibility of disordered eating. 

A systematic review by Reicks et al concerned the impact of cooking and home food preparation interventions among adults.4 The authors point out that the findings were similar in that the majority of studies showed a positive dietary behavior change and improved cooking confidence and knowledge. However, fewer of the studies had a control group, many had no follow-up past the intervention, and assessment tools were often not validated.

Swindle et al’s article was titled Facebook: The Use of Social Media to Engage Parents in a Preschool Obesity Prevention Curriculum.5 Two Head Start centers, 1 urban and 1 rural, served as the recruitment locales. A closed Facebook account hosted the material. As with other types of interventions, active, personal recruitment was more successful than flyers. Parent engagement with the site was higher when the teachers themselves were involved in posting. Not surprisingly, pictures and recipes were popular.

Some of these authors are very well known to JNEB and SNEB. Others are relatively new.  However, each of these articles have had a high degree of interest by readers.  In addition, 1 or more of the authors of each paper is an SNEB member. Several have served on our BOE, and 1 co-author also serves as an Associate Editor. Several have provided webinars either through Journal Club or sponsored by JNEB to further our understanding of their work and our science.   As I thank all authors and reviewers for their contributions to JNEB and SNEB, I’m glad I took these few minutes to further thank these talented scientists. Well done!

Karen Chapman-Novakofski, PhD, RD, LDN


  1. McArthur, L.; Riggs, A.; Uribe, F.; Spaulding, T. Health Belief Model Offers Opportunities for Designing Weight Management Interventions for College Students. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018;50(5):485-493.
  2. Gibbs, H.; Ellerbeck, E.; Gajewski, B.; Zhang, C.; Sullivan, D. The Nutrition Literacy Assessment Instrument is a Valid and Reliable Measure of Nutrition Literacy in Adults with Chronic Disease. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018;50(3):247-257.
  3. Christoph, M.; Loth, K.; Eisenberg, M.; Haynos, A.; Larson, N.; Neumark-Sztainer, D. Nutrition Facts Use in Relation to Eating Behaviors and Healthy and Unhealthy Weight Control Behaviors. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018;50(3):267-274.
  4. Reicks, M.; Kocher, M.; Reeder, J. Impact of Cooking and Home Food Preparation Interventions Among Adults: A Systematic Review (2011–2016). J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018;50(2):148-172.
  5. Swindle, T.; Ward, W.; Whiteside-Mansell, L. Facebook: The Use of Social Media to Engage Parents in a Preschool Obesity Prevention Curriculum. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018;50(1)4-10.