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Implementation of parental feeding practices: does parenting style matter?

  • Allison Kiefner-Burmeister (a1) (a2), Debra Hoffmann (a1), Samantha Zbur (a1) and Dara Musher-Eizenman (a1)



To combat childhood obesity, researchers have focused on parental feeding practices that promote child health. The current study investigated how parenting style relates to twelve parental feeding practices.


Data on parenting style and parental feeding practices were obtained for a correlational study from users of Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, an online survey system.




Mothers of children aged 7–11 years (n 193).


Parenting style related differentially to eleven out of the twelve measured practices. Authoritative mothers displayed more feeding practices that promote child health and fewer practices that impede child health. Authoritarian and permissive mothers displayed more unhealthy practices than authoritative mothers, but differed from each other on the practices they employed.


Parenting style may relate to more aspects of feeding than previously realized. The inclusion of numerous healthy feeding practices along with unhealthy practices in the current study provides suggestions for the application of healthy feeding behaviours. Instruction on feeding behaviours and parenting style should be a focus of future educational programmes.

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