Jess Haines, Professor

Family Relations and Applied Nutrition
University of Guelph

Jess Haines, PhD, MHSc, RD is a Professor of Applied Nutrition at the University of Guelph in Canada. Dr. Haines’s research aims to bridge epidemiologic research on the determinants of health behaviours with the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions to support children’s healthy eating and growth. Dr. Haines is the Co-Director of the Guelph Family Health Study, a longitudinal family-based cohort, and the Director of the Parent-Child Feeding Laboratory, which focuses on identifying how parent-child feeding interactions influence children’s eating behaviours.

Considerations in the development and testing of a screener to assess alignment with the ‘how to eat’ recommendations in Canada’s Food Guide

For the first time since the Food Guide’s development, the 2019 Canada’s Food Guide (CFG) moved beyond providing guidance on what foods Canadians should eat to also include guidance on specific eating habits that often help to support healthful dietary intake, i.e. enablers to healthy eating. These habits include eating meals with others, enjoying food, cooking more often, and being mindful when eating. Study objectives are to develop and test a screener to assess alignment with the CFG ‘how to eat’ recommendations. Similar to the screener for the ‘what to eat’ recommendations, the ‘how to eat’ screener is intended to be a brief, self-administered tool for adults that will be available in French and English. Key considerations in the development of the ‘how to eat’ screener include identifying items that adequately assess the latent constructs addressed in the ‘how to eat’ recommendations and ensuring items are relevant for Canadians in various family structures and living situations. Face and content validity will be examined through consultation with experts and cognitive testing with adults, with oversampling of adults with lower literacy. Factor analysis will be conducted using data from French and English-speaking adults. Correlation analyses will also be conducted to examine the associations between scores on the ‘how to eat’ tool and measures of dietary intake. Test-retest reliability of the ‘how to eat’ screener will also be evaluated. To allow researchers and practitioners to assess alignment with all of the 2019 CFG recommendations, a well-tested, easy-to-implement ‘how to eat’ screener is needed.