Objective To investigate whether awareness of the Japanese Food Guide (JFG) can promote changes in eating behaviour.Design A longitudinal study was conducted in 2007 and 2009 by means of an Internet-based survey. Awareness status of the JFG and a sixteen-item scale for calculating eating behaviour scores were obtained.Setting Japan.Subjects In total, 787 Japanese adults (20-59 years) who registered with an Internet research service organization were included in the study. The respondents were divided into three groups. The respondents who were aware of the JFG in 2007 were categorized into Group 1. Those who were not aware of the JFG in 2007 were categorized into either Group 2 or Group 3. Group 2 became aware of the JFG by 2009, and Group 3 was not aware of the JFG in 2009.Results In Group 2, the eating behaviour score increased significantly by 0.8 points from 4.7 in 2007 to 5.5 in 2009 (P = 0.004). The eating behaviour score of Group 1 (6.5 points in 2007; 6.3 points in 2009) and Group 3 (3.8 points in 2007; 4.1 points in 2009) did not change significantly from 2007 to 2009.Conclusions Awareness of the JFG promoted eating behaviour change in the Japanese population. The results indicate that awareness of nutrition information from sources such as the JFG would promote healthy eating.
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