Dietary change: Prescription vs. goal setting

S. E. Mazzeo-Caputo, S. J. Danish, P. M. Kris-Etherton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This investigation assessed the effectiveness of two teaching strategies, dietary prescription (Diet-Directed [D-D]) and individual goal setting (Self-Directed [S-D]), on compliance with the U.S. Dietary Goals and Guidelines. College women, 18 to 30 years old, enrolled in a one-credit course that met for 1 hour and 15 minutes weekly for 10 weeks to learn the principles and application of the U.S. Dietary Goals and Guidelines. The D-D group received a prescribed diet; the S-D group learned goal-setting skills; and a Control group received no treatment. Caloric, total fat, and polyunsaturated fat (PUFA) intake decreased significantly in both treatment groups. The D-D group reduced caloric, fat, and PUFA intake by week 5 and maintained those changes for the remainder of the experiment. The S-D group decreased caloric intake by the eighth week and decreased fat and PUFA intake between weeks 5 and 8. Those changes, however, were not maintained for the duration of the experiment. The results demonstrate that the study population made dietary changes in the direction of the U.S. Dietary Goals and Guidelines. Further investigations are required to assess the effectiveness of various teaching strategies on long-term dietary compliance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)553-556
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the American Dietetic Association
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1985

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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