Relationship of socio-economic factors and parental eating habits with children's food intake in a population-based study in a metropolitan area of Brazil

Gabriela dos Santos Barroso, Rosely Sichieri, Rosana Salles-Costa
Public Health Nutrition 2014, 17 (1): 156-61

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the association of sociodemographic factors and parental food consumption with children's food intake.

DESIGN: A cross-sectional survey.

SETTING: A population-based study with a representative sample in a metropolitan region of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Parents' socio-economic variables, age and education level and children's age were obtained by face-to-face interviews. The parental food intake was assessed using an FFQ and the children's food intake was assessed using two 24 h recalls.

SUBJECTS: Children (n 366) aged 6-30 months and their parents.

RESULTS: The hierarchical regression analysis indicated that parents' age was positively associated with the intake of vegetables among children (β = 0·73, 95% CI 0·11, 1·34), while parents' educational level was positively associated with the intake of fats (β = 3·52, 95% CI 0·04, 7·01) and negatively associated with the intake of beans (β = -13·98, 95% CI -27·94, -0·03). The age of the children was positively associated with the intakes of meats and eggs (β = 2·88, 95% CI 1·55, 4·22), sugars (β = 5·08, 95% CI 1·85, 8·30) and coffee (β = 1·77, 95% CI 0·71, 2·84), and negatively associated with the intake of vegetables (β = -2·12, 95% CI -3·20, -1·05). The influence of parental food intake was observed for the food groups of breads, cereals and tubers (β = 0·06, 95% CI 0·003, 0·12), beans (β = 0·11, 95% CI -0·003, 0·22) and fruits (β = 0·10, 95% CI 0·03, 0·16). Unfavourable socio-economic variables were associated with intakes of breads, cereals and tubers, vegetables, fruits, meats, sugars and coffee by children.

CONCLUSIONS: Parental food intake is associated with children's intake of cereals, beans and fruits independent of socio-economic status.


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