Associations between parental stress and subsequent changes in dietary intake and quality among preschool children susceptible to obesity

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Background: Cross-sectional studies indicate that parental stress may be a barrier for healthy dietary behaviours among children. However, there is a lack of evidence from longitudinal studies on the association between parental stress and changes in dietary intake among toddlers. The aim of this study was to examine the association between parental stress and changes in dietary intake and quality among preschool children susceptible to obesity. Methods: In the Healthy Start study, parents to 250 preschool children had completed a modified version of the Parental Stress Index and assessed the dietary intake of their children at baseline and after 15 months of follow up. The association between parental stress and changes in dietary intake and quality was examined using multiple linear regression analyses with adjustment for potential confounders. We tested for potential effect modification by group allocation and sex. Results: There were no significant associations between parental stress and subsequent changes in child total energy intake, intake of macronutrients or intake of fruit, vegetables, sugar sweetened beverages, fish or starch, or dietary quality. Conclusion: This study provides no evidence to support an association between parental stress and subsequent change in dietary intake and quality of their children. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, Trial number: NCT01583335, Registered: 31 March 2012, retrospectively registered.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3590
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume18
Issue number7
ISSN1661-7827
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Research areas

  • Children, Diet quality, Dietary intake, Family stress

ID: 260798037