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Nutrients 2019, 11(3), 630; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11030630

The Family Mealtime Observation Study (FaMOS): Exploring the Role of Family Functioning in the Association between Mothers’ and Fathers’ Food Parenting Practices and Children’s Nutrition Risk

1
Department of Translational Medicine, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON M5G 0A4, Canada
2
School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leicestershire LE11 3TU, UK
3
Department of Family Relations & Applied Nutrition, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 March 2019 / Accepted: 11 March 2019 / Published: 15 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behavior and Physical Activity in Children and Adolescents)
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Abstract

This cross-sectional study explores associations between mothers’ and fathers’ food parenting practices and children’s nutrition risk, while examining whether family functioning modifies or confounds the association. Home observations assessed parents’ food parenting practices during dinnertime (n = 73 families with preschoolers). Children’s nutrition risk was calculated using NutriSTEP®. Linear regression models examined associations between food parenting practices and NutriSTEP® scores. An interaction term (family functioning × food parenting practice) explored effect modification; models were adjusted for family functioning to explore confounding. Among mothers, more frequent physical food restriction was associated with higher nutrition risk in their children (β = 0.40 NutriSTEP® points, 95% Confidence Interval (CI) = 2.30, 7.58) and among both mothers and fathers, positive comments about the target child’s food were associated with lower nutrition risk (mothers: β = −0.31 NutriSTEP® points, 95% CI = −0.54, −0.08; fathers: β = −0.27 NutriSTEP® points, 95% CI = −0.75, −0.01) in models adjusted for parent education and child Body Mass Index (BMI) z-score. Family functioning did not modify these associations and they remained significant after adjustment for family functioning. Helping parents to use positive encouragement rather than restriction may help to reduce their children’s nutrition risk. View Full-Text
Keywords: family meals; food parenting practices; preschoolers; nutrition risk; direct observation family meals; food parenting practices; preschoolers; nutrition risk; direct observation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Walton, K.; Haycraft, E.; Jewell, K.; Breen, A.; Randall Simpson, J.; Haines, J. The Family Mealtime Observation Study (FaMOS): Exploring the Role of Family Functioning in the Association between Mothers’ and Fathers’ Food Parenting Practices and Children’s Nutrition Risk. Nutrients 2019, 11, 630.

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