Learning cooking skills at different ages: a cross-sectional study

Fiona Lavelle, Michelle Spence, L.E. Hollywood, Laura McGowan, Dawn Surgenor, Amanda McCloat, Elaine Mooney, Martin Caraher, Monique Raats, Moira Dean

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)
53 Downloads (Pure)


AbstractBackgroundCooking skills are increasingly included in strategies to prevent and reduce chronic diet-related diseases and obesity. While cooking interventions target all age groups (Child, Teen and Adult), the optimal age for learning these skills on: 1) skills retention, 2) cooking practices, 3) cooking attitudes, 4) diet quality and 5) health is unknown. Similarly, although the source of learning cooking skills has been previously studied, the differences in learning from these different sources has not been considered. This research investigated the associations of the age and source of learning with the aforementioned five factors.MethodsA nationally representative (Northern/Republic of Ireland) cross-sectional survey was undertaken with 1049 adults aged between 20–60 years. The survey included both measures developed and tested by the researchers as well as validated measures of cooking (e.g. chopping) and food skills (e.g. budgeting), cooking practices (e.g. food safety), cooking attitudes, diet quality and health. Respondents also stated when they learnt the majority of their skills and their sources of learning. The data was analysed using ANOVAs with post-hoc analysis and Chi2 crosstabs with a significance level of 0.05.ResultsResults showed that child (
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)119
JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
Early online date14 Nov 2016
Publication statusPublished online - 14 Nov 2016


  • Learning Cooking skills Child Teenager Adult Source Diet quality Disease prevention


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