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Research Project: Childhood Obesity Prevention

Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: Investigating acculturation, diet, and physical activity among Chinese-American children aged 9-13 years

item DIEP, CASSANDRA - Children'S Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)
item GOR, BEVERLY - Baylor College Of Medicine
item Thompson, Deborah
item BARANOWSKI, TOM - Children'S Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/1/2014
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Acculturation among those of Chinese descent may be related to changes in diet and physical activity. Research to understand the acculturative process early in life is important; however, there is no qualitative research directly with Chinese-American children. This study, currently in progress, aims to gain a deeper understanding of Chinese-American children's behaviors, preferences, and cultural influences on diet and physical activity. We are conducting 30 interviews with Chinese-American children aged 9-13 years. Questions relate to cultural identity, diet, parents' cooking and grocery shopping habits, and physical activity. So far, we have interviewed six children, all of Chinese descent and low socioeconomic status. The mean age is 9.8 years, and 67% are female. Themes include language(s) spoken and country of birth/residence as the main determinants of cultural identity, preference for both Asian and non-Asian foods, consumption of Asian foods at home and non-Asian foods at school, parents shopping mostly at Asian grocery stores, and lack of physical activity outside of the school environment. Although this research is ongoing, preliminary results illustrate that children in this study are undergoing acculturation. Our findings corroborate existing acculturation research with parents and caregivers. Further efforts are underway to expand and diversify the sample.