Parents are key players in the prevention and treatment of weight-related problems

Nutr Rev. 2004 Jan;62(1):39-50. doi: 10.1111/j.1753-4887.2004.tb00005.x.


There is growing agreement among experts that an obesogenic environment, which encourage excess food intake and idealizes thinness, plays a crucial role in the epidemic of childhood obesity and eating disorders. Because parents provide a child's contextual environment, they should be considered key players in interventions aimed at preventing or treating weight-related problems. Parenting style and feeding style are crucial factors in fostering healthy lifestyle and awareness of internal hunger and satiety cues and de-emphasizing thinness. Effective interventions for prevention and treatment of weight-related problems should be approached from a health-centered rather than a weight-centered perspective, with the parents as central agents of change. This paper reviews the environmental risk factors and parents' role in the prevention and treatment of children's weight-related problems.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child Nutritional Physiological Phenomena
  • Environment
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Health Behavior*
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Obesity / prevention & control*
  • Obesity / psychology
  • Parent-Child Relations*
  • Parenting
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Thinness