Australian parents` views on their 5-6-year-old children's food choices

Campbell, Karen J., Crawford, David A. and Hesketh, Kylie D. 2007, Australian parents` views on their 5-6-year-old children's food choices, Health promotion international, vol. 22, no. 1, pp. 11-18, doi: 10.1093/heapro/dal035.

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Title Australian parents` views on their 5-6-year-old children's food choices
Author(s) Campbell, Karen J.ORCID iD for Campbell, Karen J.
Crawford, David A.ORCID iD for Crawford, David A.
Hesketh, Kylie D.ORCID iD for Hesketh, Kylie D.
Journal name Health promotion international
Volume number 22
Issue number 1
Start page 11
End page 18
Publisher Oxford University Press
Place of publication Eynsham, United Kingdom
Publication date 2007
ISSN 0957-4824
Keyword(s) parental views
child diet
obesity prevention
Summary The home food environment is central to the development of healthy eating behaviours, but associations between the home food environment and children's food choices are not yet fully understood. The aims of this study were to explore parents' views regarding factors that influence children's food choices and parents' decision-making regarding the food they provide to their children. In-depth one-on-one interviews were conducted using a semi-structured interview schedule. Key concepts and themes were coded independently by two investigators. Participants include seventeen parents (16 mothers and 1 father) of children in their first year of formal schooling (aged 5–6 years). Five main themes emerged from the interviews: food marketing, food availability/food exposure, feeding strategies, modelling of eating and opportunities for food involvement. Parents believed that food marketing influenced their child's food preferences but differed in the ways they managed these influences. The food made available to children was also seen to influence what a child ate. Yet, although some parents believed it was the parents' role to determine what foods were made available to their child, others offered food on the basis of the child's tastes or preferences. The use of food as a reward was a feeding strategy employed by many parents. Family mealtimes were seen as an important opportunity for modelling of eating behaviour by parents. Peers were also seen to influence children's food preferences and eating behaviour. Finally, many parents believed that involving children in the preparation of food had a positive impact on children's food choices. Associations between the home food environment and children's food choices are complex and involve multiple mediators. Parents' views on the promoters and reinforcers of their decision-making regarding food and their child's food choices provide useful insights into these mediating factors. Increased understanding of these relationships is likely to enhance obesity prevention efforts.
Language eng
DOI 10.1093/heapro/dal035
Field of Research 111199 Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
HERDC collection year 2006
Copyright notice ©2006, The Author
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