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Perceptions of fruit and vegetable dietary guidelines among Australian young adults

5 Dec

My article “Perceptions of fruit and vegetable dietary guidelines among Australian young adults” was published today in Nutrition and Dietetics. The article is available online here:

Aim: Regular consumption of fruit and vegetables has been associated with a decreased risk of a number of chronic diseases. An appropriate level of knowledge is important to successfully adhere to the dietary guidelines for eating fruit and vegetables. However, there is little research about the level of knowledge that young adults have about fruit and vegetable consumption. The current study aimed to investigate the recall and understanding of Australian dietary guidelines, food product and serving size knowledge in a population of young adults.
Methods: One hundred and six undergraduate students completed online questionnaires regarding (1) knowledge of dietary recommendations; (2) knowledge of serving size information; and (3) foods that could be included as part of fruit and vegetable intake.
Results: The results showed that the sample had significant knowledge gaps in all three areas. Approximately half (54%) of participants correctly reported the recommended daily intake of fruit and vegetables, the majority were not able to correctly report serving sizes (correct responses were 30–61%) and were not able to identify all ingredients from a recipe that counted towards fruit and vegetable intake.
Conclusions: Past interventions have not tended to focus on the fruit and vegetable knowledge, or behaviours, of Australian young adults. On the basis of findings from this study, it appears that more work is needed to develop messages to effectively target this important group.

Read some media coverage about the paper here:

Emily Kothe interviewed on the World Today

The AAP report on Ninemsn and Weekly Times Now

The short report in the Sydney Morning Herald

Random Whimsy – NCBI ROFL

8 Jul

Are you getting tired of reading heady intellectual journal articles but don’t want to be caught procrastinating? Do you want to have fun while also reading proper academic papers?

If you answered yes (and even if you didn’t), I bring you NCBI ROFL

The writers at NCBI have scoured the PubMed database to find published scientific articles that will keep you entertained for hours.

They post real scientific articles with funny subjects from the PubMed database

Some of their favourite posts include

Accidental condom inhalation.

Does garlic protect against vampires? An experimental study.

Finding the frequency of Fido’s farts.

Harry Potter and the curse of headache.

A woman’s history of vaginal orgasm is discernible from her walk.

Foolproof Research Proposal Template (via Project Graduate School)

6 Jul

I’ve been working on writing a grant application this week (between that and wandering around London looking for perfect shoes!)

It’s not a big grant, and I’m only a small part of it, but while trying to work out how to sell the research to reviewers I came across this wonderful post in Project Graduate School.

Karen's Foolproof Research Proposal Template Unveiled here:  Karen’s Famous and Foolproof Research Proposal Template. This Research Proposal Template has won hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of dollars in grant money for multiple graduate students and scholars in the social sciences and humanities over the past 15 year … Read More

via Project Graduate School

Have fun kids 🙂

Random Whimsy – Open Letter to my Dissertation

1 Jul

This week’s Random Whimsy is from McSweeney’s (by way of The Thesis Whisperer and Explorations of Style).

An open letter to my dissertation on the correlation between history and identity formation in colonial Massachusetts and Pennsylvania‘ from the series ‘Open letters to people or entities who are unlikely to respond’.

I’ve always been a big fan of McSweeney’s, so if you’re looking for a way to unwind over the weekend there is a nice place to start.

Regenerating the Academic Workforce

24 Jun

The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations has just released a report on “the careers, intentions and motivations of higher degree research students in Australia”.

The report takes data from the 2010 National Research Student Survey (NRSS). The survey included 25% of all research students in Australia (11,710 of us!). This is (not suprisingly) the largest survey of research students ever undertaken in Australia.

The report primarily explores the career intentions and motivations of these students. It provides particular emphasis on the interests of Higher Degree by Research (HDR) students in following an academic career on completion of their degree and the support they have received in terms of preparation for university teaching during their candidature.

You can read the full report here, but if you’re interested in working in academia I’d recommend at least having a look at the executive summary. It gives a nice overview of what your competition is doing!

Cool research finding of the week

23 Jun

In-shell pistachio nuts reduce caloric intake compared to shelled nuts

Individuals offered in-shell pistachios consumed 41% fewer calories than those eating shelled nuts – despite feeling just as satisfied and just as full.