Parental and Child Factors Associated With 2- to 6-Year-Old Children's Diet Quality in Finland.

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Publisher: Elsevier Science Publishers
Document Type: Report
Length: 692 words

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Keywords Diet quality index; Weight; Preschool-aged; Children; Dietary counseling Abstract Background There is limited evidence about diet quality and associated factors in a representative population-based sample of preschool-aged children in Finland. Objective The aims of this study were to investigate (1) the extent to which child diet quality and the consumption of health indicator foods (vegetables, fruits, berries, vegetable oil-based spread, nonfat milk) are in accordance with Finnish recommendations for preschool-aged children, (2) whether diet quality differs between children with underweight or normal weight compared with children with overweight or obesity, and (3) whether parental or child factors are related to children's diet quality. Design This was a cross-sectional study. Participants/setting Healthy children aged 2 to 6 years (n = 766) were recruited from child health clinics across Finland from February to June 2016. Main outcome measures Diet quality and consumption of the health indicator foods were assessed by the Children's Index of Diet Quality (CIDQ, score 0-21, values Statistical analyses The overweight/obesity status and diet quality of the children were compared with 1-way analysis of variance. One-way analysis of variance was used as the preliminary analysis between child and parental factors and CIDQ scores, and linear mixed model analysis to further analyze the relationship between child and parental factors and CIDQ data. Results Only a small minority (13.7%) of the children had a good diet quality, 55.4% had a moderate diet quality, and 30.9% had a poor diet quality. Only 1% of the children consumed the key health indicator foods, namely vegetables, fruits, and berries, as recommended. Diet quality did not differ between children with underweight/normal weight and overweight/obesity. Instead, the child's younger age, parents' higher education, and parents' self-perceived healthy diet were related to good diet quality in the child. Conclusions The diet quality was moderate or poor in the majority of the children. Parental characteristics were the main factors related to the child's diet quality. The results suggest that future efforts to improve preschool-aged children's diet quality are needed including efforts to counsel families in pediatric care. Whether the findings from the current study also apply to Finnish school-aged children should be investigated further. Author Affiliation: (1) Institute of Biomedicine, Research Centre for Integrative Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Turku, Turku, Finland (2) Department of Clinical Medicine, Biostatistics, University of Turku, Turku, Finland (3) Institute of Public Health and Clinical Nutrition, School of Medicine, University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland (4) Department of Medicine, Endocrinology and Clinical Nutrition, Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio, Finland (5) Institute of Biomedicine, Research Centre for Integrative Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Turku, Turku, Finland (6) Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Turku University Hospital, Turku, Finland * Address correspondence to: Ella Koivuniemi, MSc, Institute of Biomedicine, Research Centre for Integrative Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Turku, Turku, Finland, Medisiina D7, D7027, Kiinamyllynkatu 10, 20520 Turku, Finland. Article History: Received 29 April 2020; Accepted 15 June 2021 (footnote) Supplemental materials:, , and are available at ww.wjandonline.org (footnote) STATEMENT OF POTENTIAL CONFLICT OF INTEREST No potential conflict of interest was reported by the authors. (footnote) FUNDING/SUPPORT Personal funding for E. Koivuniemi from the Juho Vainio Foundation. The funding source had no role in the design, execution, analyses, or interpretation of the data or the decision to submit these results. (footnote) AUTHOR CONTRIBUTIONS K. Laitinen designed the study. E. Koivuniemi, J. Gustafsson, V. J. Koivisto, and I. Mäkelä contributed to the data preparation. E. Koivuniemi and T. Vahlberg performed the statistical analysis and analyzed the data. E. Koivuniemi, K. Laitinen, H. Niinikoski, and U. Schwab interpreted the results. E. Koivuniemi and K. Laitinen drafted the manuscript. K. Laitinen has the primary responsibility for the final content. All authors have reviewed and revised the final manuscript. Byline: Ella Koivuniemi, MSc [elmkoi@utu.fi] (1,*), Johanna Gustafsson, PhD (1), Irene Mäkelä, MD (1), Viivi J. Koivisto, MD (1), Tero Vahlberg, MSc (2), Ursula Schwab, PhD, RD (3,4), Harri Niinikoski, MD, PhD (5,6), Kirsi Laitinen, PhD, RD (1)

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A686979911