Fathers' perspectives on the diets and physical activity behaviours of their young children

Journal article


Walsh, Adam D., Hesketh, Kylie D., van der Pligt, Paige, Cameron, Adrian J., Crawford, David and Campbell, Karen J.. (2017). Fathers' perspectives on the diets and physical activity behaviours of their young children. PLoS ONE. 12(6), p. Article e0179210. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0179210
AuthorsWalsh, Adam D., Hesketh, Kylie D., van der Pligt, Paige, Cameron, Adrian J., Crawford, David and Campbell, Karen J.
Abstract

Background
Children’s learning about food and physical activity is considerable during their formative years, with parental influence pivotal. Research has focused predominantly on maternal influences with little known about the relationships between fathers’ and young children’s dietary and physical activity behaviours. A greater understanding of paternal beliefs regarding young children’s dietary and physical activity behaviours is important to inform the design and delivery of child-focussed health promotion interventions. This study aimed to describe fathers’ perceived roles in their children’s eating and physical activity behaviours. It also sought to document fathers’ views regarding how they could be best supported to promote healthy eating and physical activity behaviours in their young children.

Methods
In depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty fathers living in socio-economically diverse areas of metropolitan Melbourne, Australia who had at least one child aged five years or less. All interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed.

Results
Thematic analysis of the transcripts revealed eight broad themes about fathers’ beliefs, perceptions and attitudes towards the dietary and physical activity behaviours of their young children: (i) shared responsibility and consultation; (ii) family meal environment; (iii) parental role modelling; (iv) parental concerns around food; (v) food rewards; (vi) health education; (vii) limiting screen time; and (viii) parental knowledge. Analysis of themes according to paternal education/employment revealed no substantial differences in the views of fathers.

Conclusions
This exploratory study presents the views of a socio-economically diverse group of fathers regarding the dietary and physical activity behaviours of their young children and the insights into the underlying perceptions informing these views. The findings suggest that fathers believe healthy eating behaviours and being physically active are important for their young children. Fathers believe these behaviours can be promoted and supported in different ways including through the provision of appropriate meal and physical activity environments and parental role modelling of desired dietary and physical activity behaviours.

Year2017
JournalPLoS ONE
Journal citation12 (6), p. Article e0179210
PublisherPublic Library of Science
ISSN1932-6203
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0179210
PubMed ID28604810
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85020716473
PubMed Central IDPMC5467895
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range1-19
FunderAustralian Research Council (ARC)
National Heart Foundation of Australia
National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online12 Jun 2017
Publication process dates
Accepted25 May 2017
Deposited16 Aug 2022
ARC Funded ResearchThis output has been funded, wholly or partially, under the Australian Research Council Act 2001
Grant IDFT130100637
100370
DE160100141
1041020
Permalink -

https://acuresearchbank.acu.edu.au/item/8y1w8/fathers-perspectives-on-the-diets-and-physical-activity-behaviours-of-their-young-children

Download files


Publisher's version
OA_Walsh_2017_Fathers_perspectives_on_the_diets_and.pdf
License: CC BY 4.0
File access level: Open

  • 52
    total views
  • 19
    total downloads
  • 1
    views this month
  • 1
    downloads this month
These values are for the period from 19th October 2020, when this repository was created.

Export as

Related outputs

Primary-school-aged children inspire their peers and families to eat more vegetables in the KiiDSAY project: a qualitative descriptive study
Karpouzis, Fay, Walsh, Adam, Shah, Smita, Ball, Kylie and Lindberg, Rebecca. (2024). Primary-school-aged children inspire their peers and families to eat more vegetables in the KiiDSAY project: a qualitative descriptive study. BMC Pediatrics. 24(1), pp. 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12887-024-04643-z
Evaluating OzHarvest’s primary-school Food Education and Sustainability Training (FEAST) program in 10–12-year-old children in Australia : Protocol for a pragmatic cluster non-randomized controlled trial
Karpouzis, F., Lindberg, R., Walsh, A., Shah, S., Abbott, G., Lai, J., Berner, A. and Ball, K.. (2021). Evaluating OzHarvest’s primary-school Food Education and Sustainability Training (FEAST) program in 10–12-year-old children in Australia : Protocol for a pragmatic cluster non-randomized controlled trial. BMC Public Health. 21(1), p. Article 967. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-021-10302-0
Paternal self-efficacy for promoting children's obesity protective diets and associations with children's dietary intakes
Walsh, Adam D., Hesketh, Kylie D., Hnatiuk, Jill A. and Campbell, Karen J.. (2019). Paternal self-efficacy for promoting children's obesity protective diets and associations with children's dietary intakes. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 16(1), p. Article 53. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-019-0814-5
Differences between mothers and fathers of young children in their Use of the internet to support healthy family lifestyle behaviors : Cross-sectional study
Laws, Rachel, Walsh, Adam D., Hesketh, Kylie D., Downing, Katherine L., Kuswara, Konsita and Campbell, Karen J.. (2019). Differences between mothers and fathers of young children in their Use of the internet to support healthy family lifestyle behaviors : Cross-sectional study. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 21(1), p. Article e11454. https://doi.org/10.2196/11454
The influence of the maternal peer group (partner, friends, mothers' group, family) on mothers' attitudes to obesity-related behaviours of their children
Cameron, Adrian J., Charlton, Emma, Walsh, Adam, Hesketh, Kylie and Campbell, Karen. (2019). The influence of the maternal peer group (partner, friends, mothers' group, family) on mothers' attitudes to obesity-related behaviours of their children. BMC Pediatrics. 19(1), p. Article 357. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12887-019-1726-x
Associations between the physical activity levels of fathers and their children at 20 months, 3.5 and five years of age
Walsh, Adam D., Crawford, David, Cameron, Adrian J., Campbell, Karen J. and Hesketh, Kylie D.. (2017). Associations between the physical activity levels of fathers and their children at 20 months, 3.5 and five years of age. BMC Public Health. 17(1), p. Article 628. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-017-4545-8
Dietary associations of fathers and their children between the ages of 20 months and 5 years
Walsh, Adam D., Cameron, Adrian J., Crawford, David, Hesketh, Kylie D. and Campbell, Karen J.. (2016). Dietary associations of fathers and their children between the ages of 20 months and 5 years. Public Health Nutrition. 19(11), pp. 2033-2039. https://doi.org/10.1017/S136898001600077X
Associations between dietary intakes of first-time fathers and their 20-month-old children are moderated by fathers' BMI, education and age
Walsh, Adam, Cameron, Adrian, Hesketh, Kylie, Crawford, David and Campbell, Karen. (2015). Associations between dietary intakes of first-time fathers and their 20-month-old children are moderated by fathers' BMI, education and age. British Journal of Nutrition. 114(6), pp. 988-994. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007114515002755
The effect of an early childhood obesity intervention on father's obesity risk behaviors : The Melbourne InFANT Program
Walsh, Adam, Lioret, Sandrine, Cameron, Adrian, Hesketh, Kylie, McNaughton, Sarah, Crawford, David and Campbell, Karen. (2014). The effect of an early childhood obesity intervention on father's obesity risk behaviors : The Melbourne InFANT Program. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 11(1), pp. 1-9. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5868-11-18