Objective: To assess the feasibility of a family meal intervention to address indicators of parent and adolescent nutrition and well-being and household food security.
Methods: Nine adolescents and a parent/caregiver were recruited from a youth health clinic. Families were provided with meal plans, recipes, and ingredients for 5 meals weekly for 4 weeks. Participants completed baseline and follow-up surveys and open-ended interviews.
Results: Overall, fidelity to the intervention was high among families; the frequency of family meals increased by approximately 2 meals/wk. Both parent/caregivers and adolescents reported improvements to nutrition (4 of 9 increased vegetable consumption for both) and most reported improvements to mental well-being. Household food insecurity also reduced during the intervention (means of 8.2 and 0.2 at baseline and follow-up, respectively).
Conclusions and Implications: Providing families with meal plans, recipes, and ingredients is an acceptable way to increase weekly frequency of family meals. Future research may consider the family meal as a way to engage with families about broader concerns.