- Principal Investigator(s): Guadalupe X. Ayala, PhD, MPH
- Project Funding Period: 01/01/2010-12/31/2015
- Project Funding Source: National Cancer Institute
El Valor de Nuestra Salud (The Value of Our Health) is a five-year National Cancer Institute (NCI)-funded research study to design, implement, and evaluate a grocery store-based intervention to promote fruit and vegetable consumption among Latino adults. Sixteen Latino grocery stores (tiendas) throughout San Diego County are participating in this group randomized controlled trial. A total of 368 customers (23 per store), recruited while entering the store to grocery shop, are participating in the study evaluation, which includes in-person interviews and weight measures at baseline, 6-months, and 12-months later. Additionally, observations of the store environment related to fruit and vegetable merchandising and promotion are conducted on a monthly basis throughout the study period.
After baseline measures are complete at each pair of stores, stores are randomly assigned to either the intervention or control condition. Control stores continue with business as usual, and they are provided the employee training component after all evaluation activities are completed. The intervention follows the Socio-Ecological framework, with intervention activities implemented at the interpersonal level and the organizational level. Both communication strategies and structural change strategies are employed within the stores during the 6-month in-store intervention. During the first two months of the intervention, store employees attend a 4-part training series to improve their job skills related to promotion of healthy foods. Study staff also work with store management to make changes to the physical environment of the store to enhance promotion of healthy foods (for example, purchasing merchandising displays for the store to better promote fruits and vegetables). The following four months of the intervention are focused on store customers, with the implementation of a point-of-purchase (POP) marketing campaign throughout the store that is integrated with food demonstrations of healthy recipes in alternating weeks. During the food demonstrations, as well as through the POP marketing campaign, customers are provided with tips on how to increase their consumption of fruits and vegetables in simple and tasty ways. Effectiveness of the intervention is evaluated using customer fruit and vegetable intake.
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