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Ana Prados



Undergraduate Research Award

School or College: 

School of Public Health and Health Sciences


Lindiwe Sibeko


Ana Prados-Bacó is an undergraduate nutrition major in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences. Under the mentorship of Dr, Loraine Cordeiro and Dr. Lindiwe Sibeko, her current research is focused on promoting healthy eating and wellbeing practices through a culturally informed intervention designed for scholars of the Girls Inc. Eureka program in Holyoke, Massachusetts. Her honors thesis project examines the change in knowledge, attitudes, and behavior (short term) of adolescents following a series of culturally and socially informed nutrition and wellness workshops.


Adolescence is a critical period in which youth face challenges related to their physical
appearance, social environment, and food choices. To live healthier lives and brighter futures,
adolescents may benefit from messaging that promotes healthy eating and well-being when these
are culturally tailored. Adolescents in the US are currently in poor health and report a lack of
satisfaction with their lifestyle compared to previous generations, particularly adolescents of
color. Therefore, this project seeks to evaluate the impact a culturally informed nutrition and
wellness project has on the knowledge, attitudes, and practices of adolescent girls participating in
a project offered in partnership with Girls Inc. Holyoke, MA

A 6-week culturally-informed nutrition and wellbeing intervention focused on
knowledge, attitude, and behavior was implemented in the form of a newly developed
after-school club "Nutrition, Wellbeing, and You Club”. The content of program lesson plans was
informed by formative data from previous workshop activities with the target population, ages
15-17 years. The knowledge, attitude, and behavior (KAB) theoretical health model was used to
frame and design the intervention, and pre and post questionnaires were administered at the end
of each session to measure the change in KAB domains.

This pilot study provides formative data on a nutritional and well-being intervention
culturally tailored for adolescents of color. Outcomes of this pilot can inform the program
development of a health promotion program aimed at a larger group to assess the efficacy of
nutrition and wellbeing-focused initiatives.

Student Award Academic Year: