Florida Public Health Review

Publication Date

December 2010


In the U.S., obesity is recognized as a growing epidemic whose increased prevalence among adults, children and adolescents present major health concerns. It is the second leading cause of preventable death, surpassed only by tobacco use. Research indicates that controlling the portion sizes of food is an effective way to lose and maintain weight loss. The nutrition education program, “Be Wise about Your Portion Size (BWPS),” was developed in 2005 by the Florida Interagency Food and Nutrition Committee (FIFNC) to support the efforts of community-based nutrition educators. The resource manual provides background information about obesity, consumer handouts, and lesson plans and activities for preschool, elementary, teen, adult, and elder adult audiences. In 2009, FIFNC members engaged in a statewide evaluation to determine program use, demographics of users, strengths and weaknesses, and recommendations for future nutrition campaigns. The LOGIC Model of program evaluation guided the evaluation process. A 14-item online survey was completed by 256 community based educators, a 30% return rate. FIFNC members found that on-line surveys were efficient and effective tools for program evaluation. Survey results showed that 79% of participants used BWPS and found materials to be useful and effective. Respondents indicated that they reached more than 22,000 Floridians with the BWPS message and suggested that the real audience reached included tens of thousands statewide.