Expanding the concept of parental control : a role for overt and covert control in children’s snacking behaviour?

Ogden, Jane, Reynolds, Rebecca and Smith, Andrea 2006, Expanding the concept of parental control : a role for overt and covert control in children’s snacking behaviour?, Appetite, vol. 47, no. 1, pp. 100-106.

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Title Expanding the concept of parental control : a role for overt and covert control in children’s snacking behaviour?
Author(s) Ogden, Jane
Reynolds, Rebecca
Smith, Andrea
Journal name Appetite
Volume number 47
Issue number 1
Start page 100
End page 106
Publisher Elsevier BV
Place of publication Amsterdam, Netherlands
Publication date 2006
ISSN 0195-6663
1095-8304
Keyword(s) obesity
parental control
snacking
children
Summary The existing literature on parental control and children’s diets is confusing. The present paper reports two studies to explore an expanded conceptualisation of parental control with a focus on overt control which ‘can be detected by the child’ and covert control which ‘cannot be detected by the child’. In study 1, 297 parents of children aged between 4 and 11 completed a measure of overt control and covert control alongside ratings of their child’s snacking behaviour as a means to assess who uses either overt or covert control and how these aspects of parental control relate to a child’s snacking behaviour. The results showed that lighter parents and those with children perceived as heavier were more likely to use covert control and those from a higher social class were more likely to use overt control. Further, whilst greater covert control predicted a decreased intake of unhealthy snacks, greater overt control predicted an increased intake of healthy snacks. In study 2, 61 parents completed the same measure of overt and covert control alongside the three control subscales of the Child Feeding Questionnaire [Birch, L.L., Fisher, J.O., Grimm-Thomas, Markey, C.N., Sawyer, R. (2001). Confirmatory factor analysis of the Child Feeding Questionnaire: A measure of parental attitudes, beliefs and practices about child feeding and obesity proneness. Appetite, 36, 201–210] to assess degrees of overlap between these measures. The results showed that although these five measures of control were all positively correlated, the correlations between the new and existing measures indicated a maximum of 21% shared variance suggesting that covert and overt control are conceptually and statistically separate from existing measures of control. To conclude, overt and covert control may be a useful expansion of existing ways to measure and conceptualise parental control. Further, these constructs may differentially relate to snacking behaviour which may help to explain some of the confusion in the literature.
Language eng
Field of Research 111712 Health Promotion
111199 Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2006, Elsevier
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30021778

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Public Health Research, Evaluation, and Policy Cluster
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