Parental influences on weight gain in infants and young children from disadvantaged families — ASN Events

Parental influences on weight gain in infants and young children from disadvantaged families (#240)

Georgina Russell 1 , Rachel Laws 2 , Karen Campbell 2 , John Lynch 3 , Kylie Ball 2 , Elizabeth Denney-Wilson 1
  1. University of Technology Sydney, Broadway, NSW, Australia
  2. Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research, Deakin University, Melbourne, Vic, Australia
  3. School of Population Health, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA, Australia


Although obesity rates amongst children are on the rise in many countries, children and infants of greater disadvantage (e.g., those with parents with low levels of education or low incomes) are at greater risk. Despite the crucial need to develop effective strategies for the prevention of obesity in children from disadvantaged backgrounds, the evidence base outlining how, when and why these young children develop greater rates of obesity remain poorly understood.  Particularly prominent amongst the range of influences on infant and childhood weight gain are parents and families.  By conducting a systematic literature review we aim to generate new insight into how parents and children interact within disadvantaged families and how these are associated with weight gain in infants and young children.


Searches of relevant electronic databases (e.g. Medline, PsycINFO) were conducted using a combination of search terms related to parenting, child or infant, disadvantage, obesity, diet, eating, physical activity and sedentary behaviour. We included studies of any design with children aged 0-5 years that involved direct and indirect parental influences on children’s eating, physical or sedentary behaviours and weight gain.  Two independent reviewers screened studies and extracted data according to eligibility criteria and a quality assessment tool.


We will present results from this systematic review with narrative synthesis outlining the evidence on the effects of parents on children’s weight status in disadvantaged families.


Results will provide important information on parental influences on children’s weight in disadvantaged families and will identify targets for early intervention programs.