Understanding the contribution of parental feeding practices to childhood obesity among Latino children is a solution-oriented approach that can lead to interventions supporting healthy childhood growth and lowering rates of obesity. The purpose of this study was to confirm the reliability and validity of the Toddler Feeding Questionnaire (TFQ) to measure parental feeding practices among a sample of Spanish-speaking parent-preschool child pairs (n = 529), and to test the hypothesis that parent characteristics of body mass index (BMI), stress, and health literacy are associated with more indulgent and less authoritative feeding practices. Standardized parent-report questionnaires were completed during baseline interviews in a randomized controlled trial of an obesity prevention intervention. The TFQ includes subscales for indulgent practices (11 items), authoritative practices (7 items), and environmental influences (6 items) with response options scored on a 5-point Likert scale and averaged. Factor analysis confirmed a three-factor structure. Internal consistency was good for indulgent (α = 0.66) and authoritative (α = 0.65) practices but lower for environmental (α = 0.48). Spearman correlation showed indulgent practices and environmental influences were associated with unhealthy child diet patterns, whereas authoritative practices were associated with a healthier child diet. Multivariate linear regression showed higher parent stress was associated with higher indulgent and lower authoritative scores; higher parent health literacy was positively associated with indulgent scores. These results indicate the TFQ is a valid measure of authoritative and indulgent parent feeding practices among Spanish-speaking parents of preschool-age children and that stress and health literacy, potentially modifiable parent characteristics, could be targeted to support healthy feeding practices.
Nutrition Research – Elsevier
Published: Jan 1, 2018
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