Effects of Parent and Child Behaviours on Overweight and Obesity in Infants and Young Children From Disadvantaged Backgrounds

Systematic Review With Narrative Synthesis

Catherine Georgina Russell; Sarah Taki; Rachel Laws; Leva Azadi; Karen J. Campbell; Rosalind Elliott; John Lynch; Kylie Ball; Rachael Taylor; Elizabeth Denney-Wilson


BMC Public Health. 2016;16(151) 

In This Article


Although children from disadvantaged families are at greater risk of overweight and obesity, the evidence base outlining reasons for this remain underdeveloped. The 32 articles included in this review examined parental feeding behaviours, children's diets, breastfeeding, formula feeding, bottle use, age of introduction of solid foods and time spent in sedentary behaviour as risk factors for infant or child overweight and obesity. However, the measured predictors of children's eating, activity, sedentary behaviour and weight differed considerably across studies. Therefore, in disadvantaged (and particularly, Indigenous) populations, evidence attesting to the influence on children's weight of most of the behavioural variables assessed is scarce; and few studies measured the same combinations of predictors, confounders, mediators and outcomes. Research to enable greater understanding of the predictors of weight gain in disadvantaged populations remains essential if we are to design targeted and effective obesity prevention interventions.