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Obes Res. 2004 Sep;12 Suppl:20S-31S.

Anthropometric, parental, and psychosocial correlates of dietary intake of African-American girls.

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Children's Nutrition Research Center, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, 1100 Bates Street, Houston, TX 77030-2600, USA.



This paper identifies the anthropometric, parental, and psychosocial characteristics and meal practices (e.g., breakfast skipping and number of meals and snacks consumed) associated with consumption of total energy, percent energy from fat, fruit, 100% fruit juice, vegetables, sweetened beverages, and water among 8- to 10-year-old African-American girls.


This study included 114 8- to 10-year-old African-American girls and a parent or primary caregiver. Girls and a parent or primary caregiver completed several dietary questionnaires. Two 24-hour dietary recalls were conducted with each girl. Height and weight were measured. Separate hierarchical regression analyses were conducted for each dependent dietary variable; potential field center differences were examined.


The number of meals and snacks consumed was correlated with energy intake. Lower BMI was related to higher vegetable consumption, and the number of snacks consumed was positively related to sweetened beverage consumption. Greater low-fat food preparation practices reported by parents were related to lower consumption of fat as a percentage of total energy.


Dietary behavior differed across geographic areas. Low-fat food preparation practices in the home seemed to be an important influence on the percentage of energy consumed from fat. Greater vegetable consumption was associated with lower BMI. Interventions to prevent excessive weight gain in African-American girls should encourage low-fat food preparation in the home and greater consumption of vegetables.

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