Submitted to: International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/10/2007
Publication Date: 6/21/2007
Citation: O'Connor, T., Hughes, S., Watson, K., Qu, H., Baranowski, T., Nicklas, T., Shewchuk, R. 2007. Parent feeding strategy clusters are associated with the weight wtatus of preschool-aged children in low-income families [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the Sixth Annual Conference of the International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. p. 210. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Purpose: To identify clusters of parents based on use of feeding strategies (FS) and evaluate their relationship with children's weight status. Methods: A study to investigate facilitators and barriers to fruit and vegetable intake among low-income preschoolers was performed with 761 parent/child dyads enrolled in Head Start programs. Nominal Group Technique identified 33 common FS. Interviews identified whether participants used each of the FS. A latent class model was run to identify latent clusters of parents with similar responses. ANOVA was used to investigate differences in child weight status among clusters. Results: Cluster 1 (the nonselective group) used most FS. Clusters 2 and 3 parents reported using FS to enhance home fruit and vegetable availability/accessibility, provide structure, modeling, praise, and some restriction. Cluster 2 also used child-centered FS, while cluster 3 used contingency management FS. Cluster 4 was the most selective, primarily using home fruit and vegetable availability/accessibility FS. Weight status of the children was significantly different between the clusters (p < 0.001). Post-hoc tests revealed that children whose parents used uniquely child-centered FS (Cluster 2) had higher BMI z-scores (mean 1.2), compared to children whose parent's were nonselective in FS (Cluster 1) (mean 0.7, p = 0.005) or uniquely contingency management oriented (Cluster 3) (mean 0.6, p = 0.001). Child dietary intake at home did not significantly differ between clusters. Conclusions: Parental use of FS to promote fruit and vegetable intake was associated with child weight status. Further research must address how parental use of different FS is related to children's lifestyle and health outcomes.