A tailored multimedia nutrition education pilot program for low-income women receiving food assistance

M. K. Campbell, L. Honess-Morreale, D. Farrell, E. Carbone, M. Brasure

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


This article describes the development and pilot evaluation of a tailored multimedia program to improve dietary behavior among 378 low-income women enrolled in the Food Stamp program in Durham, North Carolina. After randomization to intervention or control groups, participants completed a baseline survey and were resurveyed 1-3 months post-intervention. Measures included dietary fat intake assessed using a brief food-frequency questionnaire, stage of change, knowledge of low-fat foods, self-efficacy and eating behavior questions. The computer-based intervention consisted of a tailored soap opera and interactive 'info-mercials' that provided individualized feedback about dietary fat intake, knowledge and strategies for lowering fat based on stage of change. At follow-up, intervention group participants had improved significantly in knowledge (P < 0.001), stage of change (P < 0.05) and certain eating behaviors (P < 0.05) compared to the control group. Both study groups had lowered their reported fat intake markedly at follow-up (P < 0.001), but did not differ significantly from each other. A majority of participants rated the program as very helpful and were interested in using a similar program in the future. The findings of this pilot study suggest that computerized tailored self-help health promotion programs may be effective educational interventions for lower income and minority populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)257-267
Number of pages11
JournalHealth education research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1999


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