Child Mealtime Behaviors

Children’s ability to accurately self-regulate their intake of food has been associated with reduced risk of obesity; thus, parents are encouraged to accurately respond to their children’s satiety cues. However, children may refuse food for reasons other than satiety (e.g., not liking the food), and parents may struggle with how to respond if cues are unclear. Further, parents’ feeding behaviors (e.g., prompting children to eat) may be based on other mealtime features, mealtime_usdagovsuch as what the child has eaten so far during the meal. The proposed work seeks to identify patterns of dyadic mealtime behavior in relation to obesity risk in young, low-income children. Understanding how child satiety cues and parents’ responses relate to obesity risk can inform the development of interventions to prevent obesity.

This research is a collaboration with Dr. Cin Cin Tan and Dr. Julie Lumeng and is funded by NICHD (R03HD084708).

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