This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract The prevalence of childhood obesity is high among young children of Mexican origin in the United States, however, the determinants are poorly understood. We conducted a binational study with a sample from California CA and Mexico MXto identify and compare the most important factors associated with overweight and obesity among children of Mexican descent. Significantly more children were classified as overweight or obese in CA compared to MX
However, there was a high-risk group with great misconceptions about those issues. These data are consistent with those of a former study conducted among mothers of 6 to 24 months old infants and who did not consider consumption of sweetened drinks and foods with high fat content as risk factors for the development of childhood obesity 2.
Several authors have suggested that dietary practices are established early in life, and the type of foods introduced might model the food habits that will continue throughout childhood 8 - Therefore, since the younger women of this study had misconceptions about the causes and consequences of and treatment for obesity, if pregnant, they will become role models for their children's early feeding practices and lifestyle habits 1.
To our knowledge, intervention programmes for low-income young women have received little attention. Thus, this attitude may fail to prevent inadequate lifestyle habits resulting in augmentation of childhood obesity. There is an urgent need for a special focus to promote prevention strategies for this group.
On the other hand, being older than 30 years, living with a spouse, having more than six years of education, and being overweight or obese were predictors of better knowledge about the causes and consequences of and treatment for obesity.
These results are consistent with those reported by Covic et al. Wang and Coups reported a national probability survey among US adults and showed that most people believe obesity is caused by unhealthy food habits, lack of physical activity, and that genetics plays a minor role It has been suggested that the readiness to make behavioural changes is preceded by knowledge about the causes and consequences of a disease 1314which indicates the importance of exploring and examining the beliefs about the causes of obesity held by populations with high prevalence of diseases 4111214 According to Hurley et al.
Therefore, knowledge about the causes and consequences is not sufficient to implement a behavioural change. Several authors have proposed that behavioural changes depend on different contingencies where family, community, sociocultural environment and policies are important 16 The main strength of this study is the high reproducibility and internal consistency of the questionnaire.
It has also been applied to high-risk populations living in two different regions of the Mexico-USA border and was conducted during a six-month period. In addition, this is the first study to our knowledge that explores beliefs about obesity among low-income women living in the Mexico-USA border.
Women were chosen as subjects because, in Mexico, the prevalence of obesity is higher in women than in men 18and women usually play a very important role in children's feeding practices and education 1.
Limitations This is a cross-sectional study; the sample was neither representative of the entire population nor did it include all levels of education or socioeconomic groups, and all cultural and ethnic groups within Mexico.
Mexico is a large country with a multicultural and multiethnic population. Thus, it is difficult to reach a conclusion without further studies to assess the beliefs of women toward obesity in different regions within the states and ethnic groups. Additionally, in the sets of questionnaire used, prenatal and postnatal causes were not included 1920 ; environmental factors 1617and treatment efficacy were also absent 21 The association of knowledge about causes and consequences of and treatment for obesity with food consumption and the environment was not assessed either.
Conclusions The low-income women from two cities in the Mexico-USA border had a reasonably good knowledge about causes and consequences of and treatment for obesity. Nevertheless, there is a significant group that disregarded an unhealthy diet or sedentary lifestyle as causes of obesity.
This group is characterized by being less educated, with a normal weight, being younger, and single; it is this high-risk group that needs to be the focus of future prevention policies. Further studies are warranted to include environmental factors from early to adult life and to identify how the knowledge about causes and consequences of obesity is related to behavioural and attitudinal changes that facilitate modifications at the individual, community, and school level.
Those changes might facilitate attitudes that promote policy changes to elicit a less obesigenic environment. Martha Estrada-Grimaldo and Adria B.
Jimenez for their assistance and editing of the manuscript. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. Maternal BMI and migration status as predictors of childhood obesity in Mexico.
Overweight and obesity doubled over a 6-year period in young women living in poverty in Mexico. Obesity Silver Spring ; Community beliefs about childhood obesity: J Public Health Oxf ; Models of helping and coping.
Feeding practices in pregnancy and infancy: Int J Obes Lond ;32 Suppl 6:To assess the beliefs about causes and consequences of and possible solutions to obesity among years old women in two Mexican cities and to analyze the association with demographic variables, we developed a questionnaire and assessed the women's weight status.
Obesity in Mexico is a relatively recent phenomenon, having been widespread since the s with the introduction of processed food into much of the Mexican food market. Prior to that, dietary issues were limited to under and malnutrition, which is still a problem in various parts of the country.
Surveys have found that few Mexican children exercise regularly.
Photograph: Alamy In the first year, total income for both taxes exceeded the treasury’s forecast by 76%, collecting almost. What is childhood obesity? Overweight in Children; BMI in Children; we may see the first generation that will be less healthy and have a shorter life expectancy than their parents." When defining overweight in children and adolescents, it's important to consider both weight and body composition.
Among American children ages 2–19, the. BMI is an important tool to identify childhood obesity. Are you worried that you child could be overweight?
Nearly 1 in 3 kids or teens in the U.S. are overweight or obese, nearly three times the number in Obesity rates among children have risen dramatically in the United States. As analysis of a nationally representative study shows, children of newly arrived immigrants are particularly vulnerable to this growing health problem.
Jennifer Van Hook, Kelly S. Balistreri, and Elizabeth Baker report.