Explaining use of food parenting practices: the importance of predisposing factors and parental cognitions

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Abstract

Objective: The high energy intake from energy-dense foods among children in developed countries is undesirable. Improving food parenting practices has the potential to lower snack intakes among children. To inform the development of interventions, we aimed to predict food parenting practice patterns around snacking (i.e. high covert control and rewarding', low covert control and non-rewarding', high involvement and supportive' and low involvement and indulgent').

Design: A cross-sectional survey was conducted. To predict the patterns of food parenting practices, multinomial logistic regression analyses were run with 888 parents. Predictors included predisposing factors (i.e. parents' and children's demographics and BMI, parents' personality, general parenting, and parenting practices used by their own parents) and parents' cognitions (i.e. perceived behaviour of other parents, subjective norms, attitudes, self-efficacy and outcome expectations).

Setting: The Netherlands (October-November 2014).

Subjects: Dutch parents of children aged 4-12 years old.

Results: After backward elimination, nineteen factors had a statistically significant contribution to the model (Nagelkerke R-2=063). Overall, self-efficacy and outcome expectations were among the strongest explanatory factors. Considering the predisposing factors only, the general parenting factor nurturance most strongly predicted the food parenting clusters. Nurturance particularly distinguished highly involved parents from parents employing a pattern of low involvement.

Conclusions: Parental cognitions and nurturance are important factors to explain the use of food parenting practices around snacking. The results suggest that intervention developers should attempt to increase self-efficacy and educate parents about what constitute effective and ineffective parenting practices. Promoting nurturance might be a prerequisite to achieve prolonged change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2355-2363
Number of pages9
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Volume20
Issue number13
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

Keywords

  • Food parenting practices
  • Snacking
  • General parenting
  • Children
  • Socio-cognitive theory
  • Cluster analysis
  • Principal component analysis
  • GOAL-DIRECTED BEHAVIOR
  • DENSE SNACK FOODS
  • CHILDHOOD OBESITY
  • SELF-EFFICACY
  • FEEDING PRACTICES
  • PLANNED BEHAVIOR
  • PREDICTING USE
  • WEIGHT STATUS
  • CHILDREN
  • PATTERNS

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