Measuring rural food environments for local action in Australia: a systematic critical synthesis review

Love, Penelope, Whelan, Jillian, Bell, Andrew and McCracken, Jane 2019, Measuring rural food environments for local action in Australia: a systematic critical synthesis review, International journal of environmental research and public health, vol. 16, no. 13, doi: 10.3390/ijerph16132416.

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Title Measuring rural food environments for local action in Australia: a systematic critical synthesis review
Author(s) Love, PenelopeORCID iD for Love, Penelope
Whelan, JillianORCID iD for Whelan, Jillian
Bell, AndrewORCID iD for Bell, Andrew
McCracken, Jane
Journal name International journal of environmental research and public health
Volume number 16
Issue number 13
Article ID 2416
Total pages 21
Publisher MDPI
Place of publication Basel, Switzerland
Publication date 2019-07
ISSN 1661-7827
Keyword(s) Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Environmental Sciences
Public, Environmental & Occupational Health
Environmental Sciences & Ecology
food environments
measurement tools
Summary © 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Poor diet is a significant contributor to obesity and chronic disease. With all being more prevalent in rural than urban Australia, modifying the food environment is a potential intervention point to improve the health of rural populations. This review examined the applicability of measurement tools used in rural food environment research for rural Australia. Six electronic databases were searched for peer-reviewed literature, published in English between 2006 and 2018, including at least one objective measure of the Community or Consumer Food Environment in a rural or mixed rural/urban context. One-hundred and seventy-seven papers were returned after removal of duplicates, with a final review of 25. Most studies were cross-sectional, with one intervention study of quasi-experimental design. Nine studies employed a conceptual model; there was considerable variability in tools used; and few described psychometric testing. The most common attribute measured was price, followed by available healthy options. The findings of this review do not offer a suite of ‘gold standard’ measurement tools known to be reliable, valid and sensitive to change to assess the community or consumer food environments in rural Australian towns. However, recommendations are proposed to progress this important area of research within a rural context.
Language eng
DOI 10.3390/ijerph16132416
Indigenous content off
Field of Research MD Multidisciplinary
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2019, The Authors
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