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Appetite. 2017 Jul 1;114:187-193. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2017.03.032. Epub 2017 Mar 24.

Deconstructing family meals: Do family structure, gender and employment status influence the odds of having a family meal?

Author information

1
University of California, Irvine, Department of Medicine, Irvine, CA, United States. Electronic address: mzsharif@uci.edu.
2
University of Virginia, Department of Public Health Sciences, Charlottesville, VA, United States.
3
University of California, Los Angeles, Fielding School of Public Health, Department of Community Health Sciences, Los Angeles, CA, United States.
4
Kaiser Permanente, Department of Research and Evaluation, Pasadena, CA, United States.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

We assessed the odds of having a family dinner by parental gender, family structure and parental employment.

METHODS:

This study used data from the American Time Use Survey (ATUS) (2006-2008). Multivariate analyses assessed the odds of two outcomes among parents: 1) eating at all with children and 2) having a family dinner.

RESULTS:

Single men had lower odds of eating at all with children and eating a family dinner in comparison to partnered/married males. Partnered/married women had increased odds of eating at all with children and eating a family dinner compared to their partnered/married male counterparts. While single women had increased odds of eating at all with children compared to partnered/married males, no difference was detected in the odds of having a family dinner. Among dual-headed households, women had lower odds of eating a family dinner when both parents were employed compared a dual-headed household with employed male/non-employed female. There were no differences among men regardless of their employment status or that of their partner/spouse.

CONCLUSIONS:

Family structure, parental gender and employment status all influence the odds of having a family dinner. Future research on family meals should consider all of these factors to better understand trends and disparities across household compositions.

PMID:
28347778
PMCID:
PMC5926186
DOI:
10.1016/j.appet.2017.03.032
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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