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Child Obes. 2013 Oct;9(5):427-36. doi: 10.1089/chi.2012.0098.

Compliant eating of maternally prompted food predicts increased body mass index z-score gain in girls: results from a population-based sample.

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1
1 Department of Nutrition, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill , Chapel Hill, NC.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Poorer "division of responsibility" (DoR) feeding, characterized by high parental control and reduced child food choice, may promote pediatric obesity, although population-based prospective data are lacking. We tested whether poorer DoR feeding predicts childhood overweight/obesity onset and BMI z-score gain, over 10 years in the National Longitudinal Study of Youth.

METHODS:

We studied 302 girls and 316 boys, with mean ages 52.24 and 52.35 months, respectively, in 1986, who were followed for 10 years. We excluded children who were initially overweight/obese. Mothers completed three DoR feeding questions in 1986: (1) child eating compliance of prompted foods; (2) child eating compliance of initially refused foods; and (3) mother-allotted child food choice. Child BMI (kg/m(2)) was calculated from measured weights and heights in 1986, 1988, 1992, 1994, and 1996.

RESULTS:

Daughters who complied with maternal food prompts [odds ratio (OR), 2.01] and those who obeyed maternal prompts to consume initially rejected foods (OR, 2.29) "most of the time" were significantly more likely than daughters who complied less frequently to become overweight/obese after 8 years. Also, more frequent eating compliance (p<0.001) and more frequent compliance of initially rejected foods (p=0.003) predicted greater BMI z-score gain in girls. These associations were not found for boys. Maternal obesity consistently predicted overweight/obesity risk in girls (ORs, 2.48-8.63) and boys (ORs, 2.27- 4.03).

CONCLUSIONS:

Teaching parents to avoid coercive feeding practices, while encouraging child self-selection of healthier foods, may help their daughters to achieve better energy balance.

PMID:
24094145
DOI:
10.1089/chi.2012.0098
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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