Measuring behavioural susceptibility to obesity: validation of the child eating behaviour questionnaire

Appetite. 2007 Jan;48(1):104-13. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2006.07.075. Epub 2006 Sep 7.


The Child Eating Behaviour Questionnaire (CEBQ; [Wardle, J., Guthrie, C.A., Sanderson, S., & Rapoport, L. (2001). Development of the children's eating behaviour questionnaire. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 42, 963-970]) is a parent-report questionnaire designed to assess eating styles related to obesity risk. It has been shown to have a robust factor structure and good internal reliability, but has not been validated against behavioural measures of eating. In the present study, associations were examined between three CEBQ scales (Satiety Responsiveness, SR; Food Responsiveness, FR; Enjoyment of Food, EF) and four aspects of eating behaviour (eating without hunger, caloric compensation, eating rate and energy intake at a meal) aggregated across up to five occasions, in a sample of 4-5-year olds. In multiple regression, the aggregated behavioural measures of eating explained 56% of the variance in SR, 33% of the variance in FR and 40% of the variance in EF. These findings support the validity of the CEBQ as a parent-report instrument to assess 'obesogenic' eating behaviours in children. An easily-administered measure such as the CEBQ will be valuable in gathering data on the scale required to study the behavioural phenotype associated with obesity risk.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Child, Preschool
  • Energy Intake / physiology*
  • Feeding Behavior / physiology
  • Feeding Behavior / psychology
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Obesity / epidemiology
  • Obesity / etiology*
  • Parents
  • Psychometrics
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Factors
  • Satiation / physiology*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*