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Predictors of dietary energy density among preschool aged children

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posted on 2018-02-06, 00:00 authored by Nilmani N T Fernando, Karen CampbellKaren Campbell, Sarah McNaughtonSarah McNaughton, Miaobing ZhengMiaobing Zheng, Katie LacyKatie Lacy
Childhood obesity is a global problem with many contributing factors including dietary energy density (DED). This paper aims to investigate potential predictors of DED among preschool aged children in Victoria, Australia. Secondary analysis of longitudinal data for 209 mother-child pairs from the Melbourne Infant Feeding, Activity and Nutrition Trial was conducted. Data for predictors (maternal child feeding and nutrition knowledge, maternal dietary intake, home food availability, socioeconomic status) were obtained through questionnaires completed by first-time mothers when children were aged 4 or 18 months. Three 24-h dietary recalls were completed when children were aged ~3.5 years. DED was calculated utilizing three methods: "food only", "food and dairy beverages", and "food and all beverages". Linear regression analyses were conducted to identify associations between predictors and these three measures of children's DED. Home availability of fruits (β: -0.82; 95% CI: -1.35, -0.29, p = 0.002 for DEDfood; β: -0.42; 95% CI: -0.82, -0.02, p = 0.041 for DEDfood+dairy beverages) and non-core snacks (β: 0.11; 95% CI: 0.02, 0.20, p = 0.016 for DEDfood; β: 0.09; 95% CI: 0.02, 0.15, p = 0.010 for DEDfood+dairy beverages) were significantly associated with two of the three DED measures. Providing fruit at home early in a child's life may encourage the establishment of healthful eating behaviors that could promote a diet that is lower in energy density later in life. Home availability of non-core snacks is likely to increase the energy density of preschool children's diets, supporting the proposition that non-core snack availability at home should be limited.

History

Journal

Nutrients

Volume

10

Issue

2

Article number

178

Pagination

1 - 17

Publisher

MDPI

Location

Basel, Switzerland

eISSN

2072-6643

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2018, the authors