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Relationship between caregivers' nutritional knowledge and children's dietary behavior in Chinese rural areas.

Research paper by Rong R Zeng, Jiayou J Luo, Cai C Tan, Qiyun Q DU, Weimin W Zhang, Yanping Y Li

Indexed on: 04 Dec '12Published on: 04 Dec '12Published in: Zhong nan da xue xue bao. Yi xue ban = Journal of Central South University. Medical sciences



Abstract

To explore the relationship between caregivers' nutritional knowledge and children's dietary behavior in rural areas of China.A cross-sectional study was conducted. 3361 rural caregivers and their children, aged 2 to 7 years old, were selected randomly and surveyed by questionnaire. Logistic regression models were used to identify the relationship between caregivers' nutritional knowledge and the children's dietary behaviors.The awareness level of nutritional knowledge among rural caregivers was 57.9%; among the children surveyed, 79.6% did not like to drink milk, 66.0% were considered choosy of food, 84.1% regularly snacked, 24.4% frequently skipped breakfast, and 13.7% did not come to meals on time. Logistic regression models indicated that a caregiver with a low level of nutritional knowledge is a risk factor for a child's unhealth dietary behaviors (snacking excepted): the odds ratios (OR) of not liking to drink milk, being choosy about food, skipping breakfast or not having meals on time are 1.665, 1.338, 1.330 and 1.582, respectively.Caregivers' nutritional knowledge is strongly associated with children's dietary behavior. Nutrition education programs are urgently wanted to improve caregiver's knowledge and thus to improve children's dietary behavior in rural areas of China.