Parental Nutritional Knowledge and Its Effect on Child Diet and Weight Status

Noura E. Insolera, CUNY Institute for Demographic Research (CIDR)

Using data from the 1999 Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) and its 2002 Child Development Supplement (CDS), connections between parental nutritional knowledge, child dietary diversity, and child weight status are examined. The results, which are based on logistic regression analysis, show that having a parent with a ‘high nutritional guideline’ score increases their child’s probability of having a ‘high diverse diet’ by 34.7%. Having a child with a ‘high diverse diet’, in turn, decreases the probability of being overweight by 42%. This analysis controls for other factors including age, race, family income, and parental educational attainment. The sample consists of 1,674 children and adolescents between 10 and 19 years of age. This research begins to quantify the diet of the child, which is significant in deciphering the correlation between parental nutritional knowledge and the overweight status of their children.

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Presented in Session 33: Nutrition, Obesity and Overweight in Children and Youth