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Nutrients ; 14(24)2022 Dec 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2200562


Restaurant food is one of the important sources of sodium intake in China. We aimed to determine whether a restaurant-based comprehensive intervention program may induce lower sodium content in restaurant food. A randomized controlled trial was implemented between 2019 and 2020 in 192 restaurants in China. After baseline assessment, the restaurants were randomly assigned to either an intervention or a control group (1:1). Comprehensive activities designed for intervention restaurants were conducted for one year. The primary outcome was the difference in change of sodium content estimated by the mean values of five best-selling dishes for each restaurant, from baseline to the end of the trial between groups. In total, 66 control restaurants and 80 intervention restaurants completed the follow-up assessment. The average sodium content of dishes at baseline was 540.9 ± 176.8 mg/100 g in control and 551.9 ± 149.0 mg/100 g in intervention restaurants. The mean effect of intervention after adjusting for confounding factors was -43.63 mg/100 g (95% CI: from -92.94 to 5.66, p = 0.08), representing an 8% reduction in sodium content. The restaurant-based intervention led to a modest but not significant reduction in the sodium content of restaurant food. There is great urgency for implementing effective and sustainable salt reduction programs, due to the rapid increase in the consumption of restaurant food in China.

Restaurants , Sodium, Dietary , Sodium , Sodium, Dietary/analysis , Fast Foods , China
BMJ Open ; 12(4): e053122, 2022 04 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1794501


INTRODUCTION: There is an urgent need to reduce the burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), particularly in low-and middle-income countries, where the greatest burden lies. Yet, there is little research concerning the specific issues involved in scaling up NCD interventions targeting low-resource settings. We propose to examine this gap in up to 27 collaborative projects, which were funded by the Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases (GACD) 2019 Scale Up Call, reflecting a total funding investment of approximately US$50 million. These projects represent diverse countries, contexts and adopt varied approaches and study designs to scale-up complex, evidence-based interventions to improve hypertension and diabetes outcomes. A systematic inquiry of these projects will provide necessary scientific insights into the enablers and challenges in the scale up of complex NCD interventions. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: We will apply systems thinking (a holistic approach to analyse the inter-relationship between constituent parts of scaleup interventions and the context in which the interventions are implemented) and adopt a longitudinal mixed-methods study design to explore the planning and early implementation phases of scale up projects. Data will be gathered at three time periods, namely, at planning (TP), initiation of implementation (T0) and 1-year postinitiation (T1). We will extract project-related data from secondary documents at TP and conduct multistakeholder qualitative interviews to gather data at T0 and T1. We will undertake descriptive statistical analysis of TP data and analyse T0 and T1 data using inductive thematic coding. The data extraction tool and interview guides were developed based on a literature review of scale-up frameworks. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The current protocol was approved by the Monash University Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC number 23482). Informed consent will be obtained from all participants. The study findings will be disseminated through peer-reviewed publications and more broadly through the GACD network.

Diabetes Mellitus , Hypertension , Noncommunicable Diseases , Developing Countries , Diabetes Mellitus/therapy , Humans , Hypertension/diagnosis , Hypertension/therapy , Noncommunicable Diseases/therapy , Systems Analysis
Front Public Health ; 10: 744881, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1775969


Background: Salt reduction is a cost-effective, and rather challenging public health strategy for controlling chronic diseases. The AppSalt program is a school-based multi-component mobile health (mhealth) salt reduction program designed to tackle the high salt intake in China. This mixed-methods process evaluation was conducted to investigate the implementation of this program across sites, identify factors associated with the implementation, and collect evidence to optimize the intervention design for future scale-up. Methods: Mixed methods were used sequentially to collect data regarding five process evaluation dimensions: fidelity, dose delivered, dose received, reach, and context. Quantitative data were collected during the intervention process. Participation rate of intervention activities was calculated and compared across cities. The quantitative data was used for the selection of representative intervention participants for the qualitative interviews. Qualitative data were collected in face-to-face semi-structured interviews with purposively selected students (n = 33), adult family members (n = 33), teachers (n = 9), heads of schools (n = 9), key informants from local health, and education departments (n = 8). Thematic analysis technique was applied to analyze the interview transcripts using NVivo. The qualitative data were triangulated with the quantitative data during the interpretation phase. Results: The total number of families recruited for the intervention was 1,124. The overall retention rate of the AppSalt program was 97%. The intervention was implemented to a high level of fidelity against the protocol. About 80% of intervention participants completed all the app-based salt reduction courses, with a significant difference across the three cities (Shijiazhuang: 95%; Luzhou: 73%; Yueyang: 64%). The smartphone app in this program was perceived as a feasible and engaging health education tool by most intervention participants and key stakeholders. Through the interviews with participants and key stakeholders, we identified some barriers to implementing this program at primary schools, including the left-behind children who usually live with their grandparents and have limited access of smartphones; perceived adverse effects of smartphones on children (e.g., eyesight damage); and overlooked health education curriculum at Chinese primary schools. Conclusion: This process evaluation demonstrated the feasibility and acceptability of using smartphone applications delivered through the education system to engage families in China to reduce excessive salt intake. Clinical Trial Registration: The AppSalt study was registered at, identifier: ChiCTR1800017553. The date of registration is August 3, 2018.

Sodium Chloride, Dietary , Adult , Child , China , Health Education , Health Promotion/methods , Humans