Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Wolstenholme, H,Heary, C,Kelly, C
Fussy eating behaviours: Response patterns in families of school-aged children
Optional Fields
Fussy eating Picky eating Parental feeding practices Family processes Qualitative research School-aged children PRESCHOOL-CHILDREN FOOD CHOICES MOTHERS DIETARY PREVALENCE ASSOCIATIONS PRESSURE
Background: Fussy eating is the unwillingness to eat both familiar and novel foods. Childhood fussy eating can be a barrier to a healthful diet and is associated with mealtime stress and conflict. Research has primarily focused on parenting practices in response to fussy eating in pre-schoolers. Less is known about parenting practices and family processes such as setting goals and managing emotions in relation to fussy eating in older children. This research aims to explore how families respond to fussy eating behaviours in school-aged children and based on parents' retrospective accounts, to investigate how responses change over time.Methods: 16 parents from 14 families of school-aged children (6-10 years) participated in semi-structured qualitative interviews. Interviews were analysed using inductive thematic analysis.Results: Three family process themes were identified which explain how families respond to fussy eating behaviours: 1) Dynamic and Evolving Feeding Goals, 2) Managing Negative Emotions and 3) Parenting Practices: Figuring out What Works. Three distinct patterns were identified regarding how parent responses change over time: 1) Resistance-to-Acceptance Response, 2) Fluctuating Response and 3) Consistent Response.Discussion: The family response to fussy eating behaviours is complex, dynamic and contextual. This has implications for the design and interpretation of quantitative studies, and for the development of guidelines and interventions.
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