How Much is the Influence of Parents on Children Eating Habits?

The general belief is that parents play a vital role in the development of the eating habits of their children. Contrary to this belief scientists from the “

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

” have found that the influence of parents on the children eating habits is only partial. The results of their study are published in the December 2010 edition of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

What the Research on Children Eating Habits Revealed?

  • The experts reviewed and analysed scientific publications on this topic from various countries between 1980-2009.
  • The relation between parent-child diet was found to be fairly complex than the general notion of it being a straight forward one.

The eating patterns in children were influenced by factors like the way they ate at schools, the influence of their friends in making food choices, the local food environment, production, distribution and advertisement of foods and the policies and guidelines of the government for regulation of meals in schools.

  • The impact of parents leading by example in choosing a nutritious diet and following it themselves is found to be profound on the eating habits of children.
  • In United States, parent-child correlations as far as intake of total fat and energy are concerned is found to be weaker in comparison to non-European countries.
  • The study has to be further extended to different population groups to make it more comprehensive.
  • Further study can focus on identifying the determinants and studying the parent-child similarities in the diet.

Latest scientific policies and initiatives on the children eating habits will be discussed by the researchers from the Bloomberg School and obesity experts of repute from National Institute of Aging and other universities in America in the coming days.

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