The importance of parents' social support and economic capital for their preschool-aged children with obesity
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Introduction: While the influence of parental behavior and economic status on children’s weight status is well-known, little is known about the impact of specific family-related aspects such as parental and grandparental social support. This study investigates the importance of parental and grandparental social support and economic capital for children’s weight status in a clinical sample of preschoolers with obesity.
Methods: Baseline data from an obesity intervention study for preschoolers, 4-6 years of age (n = 39, 56 % girls) was used. Among parents, 73% were overweight/obese, 60% had a 3-year high school education and 50% were of non-Swedish origin. Linear regression analyses, simple and multiple, were performed separately for mothers and fathers on indicators of economic capital and social support with child BMI SDS as the dependent variable. Additionally, combined analyses were conducted in which parental income was stratified by emotional support.
Results: Low levels of income for both parents and low emotional support from grandparents for fathers were significantly associated with a higher child BMI. Moreover, the association between parental income and the child’s BMI SDS was stronger among those parents who had low emotional support versus those who had high emotional support.
Conclusion: The study indicate that both economic capital and social support of parents may influence the level of obesity in their children and that emotional support of grandparents is especially important when parental income is low.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 40 p.
Children, education, income, obesity, parents, socioeconomic status, social support, gender differences, BMI SDS
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-105523OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-105523DiVA: diva2:737099
Nowicka, Paulina, Assistant Research ProfessorUlijaszek, Stanley, Professor
Östberg, Viveca, Associate Professor