Date of Award
Quantitative Research Methods
Kathy E. Green, Ph.D.
Childhood obesity, Maternal perception of body weight
Childhood overweight and obesity is a complex disease that requires early identification and intervention. Little research has investigated the influence of maternal perception of child body weight on reported child physical activity behaviors and importance to change these behaviors. Using parent survey and child body mass index (BMI) data, the current study evaluated the difference between maternal perception of child weight status and reported physical activity and sedentary behavior levels amongst preschool-aged children. Reported child physical activity and sedentary behavior levels were not significantly different depending on maternal misperception. A significant interaction, however, between maternal perception of child body weight and child gender, F(1, 469) = 4.70, p = 0.031 and maternal perception of child body weight and child ethnicity was revealed, F(1, 470) = 3.74, p = 0.05. Furthermore, the degree of importance mothers placed on changing child physical activity behavior was not significantly different depending on maternal misperception. The inability of mothers to accurately perceive the weight status of their child(ren) and report their child's physical activity behaviors has the potential to disrupt prevention intervention efforts. Thus, interventions should incorporate parental education, along with multi-faceted activities, to raise awareness and initiate change to increase physical activity and reduce pediatric overweight and obesity.
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Brooks, Kayla F., "Maternal Perception of Child Body Weight and Physical Activity Behavior Patterns: Interactions with Gender and Ethnic Minority Status of Preschool Children" (2014). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 91.
Received from ProQuest
Kayla F. Brooks
Public health, Behavioral sciences