J Nutr Health.  2017 Feb;50(1):85-97. 10.4163/jnh.2017.50.1.85.

Study on snack intakes in obese elementary students in Jeju city

  • 1Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Jeju National University, Jeju 63243, Korea.
  • 2Department of Physical Education, Jeju National University, Jeju 63243, Korea.
  • 3Department of Health Policy and Management, School of Medicine, Jeju National University, Jeju 63243, Korea. realist@jejunu.ac.kr


This study was conducted to investigate dietary habits related to weight reduction and snack intake habits of 4th to 5th grade elementary students located in Jeju-si, Jeju, South Korea.
The 4(th) and 5(th) grade elementary school students (total n = 234, equally matched numbers of normal weight children and overweight/obese children (n = 117/group)) were surveyed using a questionnaire and a 24-hour dietary recall method in Oct 2015.
The percentage of students who experienced reduced food intake to control weight was 26.3% in the normal weight group (NG) and 77.6% in the obese group (OG). Most frequently answered meal for reduced intake was snacks in the NG and dinner in the OG. Percentages of daily calorie intake among subjects were 17.2% for breakfast, 33.8% for lunch, 29.7% for dinner, and 19.3% for snacks. Frequency of snack intake was 2.1 times a week in NG and 1.6 times a week in OG, which showed a statistical difference between body weight groups. Types of snack foods were distinctly different depending on where children consumed them, although no difference was observed between NG and OG. In addition, snack intake level of low energy and nutrient-dense foods was significantly lower in the OG compared to the NG, whereas snack intake level of energy dense and low-nutritive foods was not different between the OG and NG.
Taken together, snack intake level with consideration of frequency and amount of snack intake showed that children in the OG consumed significantly less low energy and nutrient-dense foods compared to the NG. Therefore, nutritional education for choosing healthy snack foods for children regardless of body weight status is crucial based on family-school links.


elementary school students; obesity; snack intake; case control; Jeju

MeSH Terms

Body Weight
Case-Control Studies
Food Habits
Weight Loss

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