The health of America’s youth is jeopardized as obesity, often beginning in childhood, becomes a major epidemic. Parents have exceptional influence on their children, especially nutritionally, which impacts how their children grow and develop. Parents with minimal nutrition education and who do not practice healthy eating habits may unintentionally influence their children in practices that could lead to nutrition-related disease and/or obesity. This research evaluated the dietary habits and nutrition knowledge of parents of preschoolers at a community Head Start program in Lexington, KY, which served a high percentage of Hispanic children. The parents were given a survey evaluating their educational background, ethnicity, and knowledge of healthy eating guidelines. Results indicated that Hispanic parents reported they did not adequately meet the US Dietary Guidelines when following a traditional Hispanic diet. The African-American and Caucasian parent group also showed deficient knowledge in general nutrition questions and overall unhealthy eating habits. Therefore, effective nutrition education programs need to target parents who can, in turn, influence and guide their children in developing healthy lifestyles.
Keys, Lisa Renee
"The Dietary Habits and Nutrition Education Levels of Parents of Pre-School Children at a Community Head Start Program,"
Vol. 5, Article 10.
Available at: http://uknowledge.uky.edu/kaleidoscope/vol5/iss1/10