Alba Tamarit, EncarnaciÃ³n1; Vallada Regalado, Eva2; ClÃ©rigues Bonet, Victoria3; Olaso GonzÃ¡lez, Gloria4; Moreno GÃ¡lvez, Ãngela5; GandÃa Balaguer, AsunciÃ³n6
Introduction: As a child grows and develops within its family and social nucleus, determined eating habits are acquired from the earliest stages. The aim of this investigation is to obtain information about the origin of the families who respond to the nutritional survey, recognise the relationship to the child and the responsibility of the child’s nutrition, the civil state of the person, the professional situation of the parents, the person in charge of planning and providing the child’s menu, the number of people who live in the household in relation to the complementation to the daily diet and the consideration of the time available for organising the child’s menu.
Material And Methods: Through a nutritional survey aimed at parents concerning their children’s eating habits, the following information was obtained. In a total population of 312 school age children who attended different schools in Valencia (Spain), an observational, descriptive cross section study was performed, from which 245 samples of the survey were gleaned, collected between June and December 2012
Results: 84.49% of the children come from families of Spanish origin. 13.41% of the children are from families who are not Spanish, summing up to 18 different countries of origin; while it is unknown the origin of 2.04% of the families, as they did not indicate this in the survey. 86.06% of mothers consider that they are responsible for overseeing their child’s diet, whilst 9.62% of fathers take this role. The majority of parents or legal representatives of the students in the study are between: 35-39 years old ( 29.33%) and between40-49 years old (53.85%). 84,62% of the participants in the survey are married or living with their partner. 74.52% of fathers and54.80% of mothers are employed. In 74.27% of households, the role of planning and preparing the child’s daily diet belongs to the mother, with the father taking the role of planning in 0.97% of cases and preparing in 2.91%. When the number of persons living in the home is lower - 2 people- the complementation of the daily diet is 4.29%, and in the majority of cases of homes with 3,4 and 5 persons, these figures fluctuate in 31.03%, 40.90% and 36% respectively. In households of 2, 3, 4 and 5 persons, the response to the question about having sufficient time to prepare the child’s menu was positive in 57.14%, 68.34%, 61.6% y 52% of cases respectively
Conclusions: The large majority of families studied are of Spanish origin. The mothers are the highest percentage of cases regarding the responsibility of the child’s diet. The age group of the person who responded to the survey increases between 40-49 years old and 50 years old or above. These people are mainly married or living with their partner. Unemployment is more common amongst mothers than fathers. The role of planning and providing the daily menu of the child is also predominantly mothers rather than fathers. When fewer people live in the home (2 people), the supplementation/complementation of the daily diet is less, the best results are reflected in households formed of 3, 4 and 5 persons, where this complementation occurs in the majority of cases. In the homes where 2, 3, 4 and 5 people reside, the prevailing response is that there is sufficient time available to organise the child’s menu.