Effect of Face-to-Face Education on Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices Toward "Traffic Light" Food Labeling in Isfahan Society, Iran

Int Q Community Health Educ. 2021 Apr;41(3):275-284. doi: 10.1177/0272684X20916612. Epub 2020 Apr 6.


Emerging noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) with premature mortality are one of the major concerns in health supervising organizations of the world. High intake of energy, salt, sugar, fat, and trans fatty acids are introduced as dietary risk factors of NCDs. The status of food risk factors is presented in Traffic Light (TL) food labeling through colors of red, yellow, and green as the signs of stop, wait and watch and go, respectively. This stepwise interventional study examined whether TL education can result in choosing healthier food via assessing the impact of face-to-face educational sessions on knowledge, attitudes, and practices of 673 respondents toward TL food labeling through a self-administered and structured questionnaire. Paired t test or alternatively Wilcoxon test was used to evaluate the influence of education in total scores of knowledge, attitudes, and practices in test-retest. Results indicated that before education, the average of the scores for the knowledge, attitudes, and practices was 1.003 ± 0.69, 10.97 ± 1.86, and 1.60 ± 1.84, respectively. After education, the scores were increased to 8.72 ± 3.11, 15.95 ± 2.64, and 8.42 ± 1.69. Significant differences in the scores of the respondents were observed before and after education (p < .05). This study revealed that the intervention of education had positive effect on the knowledge, attitudes, and practices of the studied population. Even though general awareness about the food risk factors of NCDs existed, special education is required to make public TL and food labeling information usage as an actual guidance for every food item in Iran.

Keywords: Iran; Traffic Light; education; food labeling; noncommunicable diseases.

MeSH terms

  • Food
  • Food Labeling*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Iran
  • Surveys and Questionnaires