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01-10-2010 | Original Article | Uitgave 5/2010

Child Psychiatry & Human Development 5/2010

Low Income, Mexican Mothers’ Perception of Their Infants’ Weight Status and Beliefs About Their Foods and Physical Activity

Tijdschrift:
Child Psychiatry & Human Development > Uitgave 5/2010
Auteurs:
Arturo Jimenez-Cruz, Montserrat Bacardi-Gascon, Octelina Castillo-Ruiz, Zally Mandujano-Trujillo, Alexandra Pichardo-Osuna
Belangrijke opmerkingen
All the authors participated in the design and analysis of the project, the interpretation of the results, and the writing of the paper.

Abstract

Childhood obesity is being considered a global health epidemic, and one of the countries mostly affected by it is Mexico. The aim of this study was to assess the perceptions of low-income mothers with regard to their child’s weight status and physical activity and their beliefs about healthy and high-density foods. A total of 813 mothers attending a vaccination centre at three primary care clinics in three different regions of Mexico, and their infants ranging from 5 to 24 months old, participated in the study. Anthropometrical measurements and interviews were conducted at the clinic. The child’s average age was 12.7 months. Forty-three percent of mothers underestimate their child’s weight status; this percentage jumps to 83% when we refer to mothers of overweight and obese children. Mothers with overweight and obese children, having a monthly income higher than 600 dollars, less than 6 years of education, and having migrated to their current state of residence are more likely to underestimate their child’s weight. A high percentage of the mothers wish their children were less active, and they do not consider that carbonated and non-carbonated sweetened drinks and high fat snacks might be dangerous to their child’s health. In conclusion, low-income, Mexican mothers highly underestimate their infant’s weight status and have higher risks of fostering an obesogenic environment.

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