Modelling parents’ unhealthy food choices for their children: the moderating role of child food allergy and implications for health policy

Ali Bassam Mahmoud, Nicholas Grigoriou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We investigated the effects of parent’s gender, education, and attitudes towards childhood obesity on parents’ unhealthy food choices for their children and how these effects might be moderated by child and/or parent food allergy. A random sampling procedure returned 206 valid responses of parents who had children aged between 6 and 12 years old. A structural equation modelling approach was employed. Contrary to monitoring, our findings revealed that pressure to eat positively predicted parents’ unhealthy food choices for their children. Furthermore, mothers were more likely to make unhealthy food choices for their children than fathers, unless the child had food allergy. In that case, i.e. having a food-allergic child, mothers were less likely to make unhealthy food choices than fathers. In addition, higher educated parents were less likely to make unhealthy food choices for their children than lower educated. Finally, parents’ food allergy did not moderate our hypothesised path model. Future scholarly work can address the role marketing initiatives play in assisting parents to prevent childhood obesity. Our study guides health care professionals and government health departments to pay more attention to parent’s education levels while making efforts to improve the effectiveness of their nutrition and health promotion programmes.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Family Studies
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2019

Keywords

  • food allergy
  • food choice
  • obesity
  • parenting
  • Social marketing

Cite this