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Mothers’ Mealtime Actions Influence – And Are Influenced By – Kids’ Eating Behavior

November 1, 2010: 09:30 AM EST

British researchers have found that school-age children tend to enjoy eating more if their mothers don’t try too hard at mealtime to control their diet or apply pressure to eat. In fact, when mothers are very strict about what kids eat, the kids will tend to overeat. And kids whose mothers pressure them to eat develop “food avoidant tendencies, i.e. they become picky eaters. But the researchers, who analyzed questionnaire data from 213 families, acknowledged that the mothers’ mealtime behavior is not necessarily the cause of their children’s eating problems: the mothers may actually be reacting to how their kids eat. In other words, “children both influence and are influenced by their parents' feeding practices.”

Laura Webber, et al., "Associations between Children's Appetitive Traits and Maternal Feeding Practices", Journal of the American Dietetic Association, November 01, 2010, © American Dietetic Association (ADA)
Vitality & Better Living
United Kingdom
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