% 2020 International journal of environmental research and public health
* Preferences for Sweet and Fatty Taste in Children and Their Mothers in Association with Weight Status.
- Strong preferences for sweet and fat tastes (characters) are associated with the consumption of foods high in calories. The taste preferences, especially the sweet and fat tastes (characters), might be one of the factors predisposing children to become overweight and/or develop obesity. The aim of the study is to assess taste preferences in children and their mothers in association with their weight status. In the study, 150 children aged 8-15 were included; among them, 75 had overweight and/or obesity, and 150 mothers of whom 69 were overweight and/or obese. Body composition estimates were obtained using a bioelectrical impedance analysis-body height was measured using a stadiometerSeca 213. Sensory tests were carried out using apple juice of various sugar content and crackers of various fat content. Results show that children prefer a sweet taste more often than their mothers (50.0% vs. 35.3%, p = 0.009). In the group of children who preferred the high-sweet taste, there were twice as many obese children when compared to the group who preferred the low-sweet taste. Similar relationships applied to mothers. Preferences for fat taste (character) among mothers increased the risk of obesity among their children (39% vs. 20%; p = 0.039). Taste preferences, especially a sweet taste preference, seem to be one of the important factors determining overweight and obesity in children and adults. The fat taste(character) preferences in mothers correlate with the overweight and/or obesity of their children, while such preferences among children were not significantly different irrespective of body weight status.
* Primary school children and nutrition: lifestyles and behavioral traits associated with a poor-to-moderate adherence to the Mediterranean diet. A cross-sectional study.
- The Mediterranean diet has consistently shown a beneficial influence on health and longevity. The aim of this cross-sectional study was to identify all the various factors-such as socio-demographics, lifestyles, and behavioral traits-associated with the risk of a poor adherence to the Mediterranean diet in a sample of Italian primary school children. The study sample included 267 children in their first year of primary school. Their mothers were asked to answer an anonymous, self-administered questionnaire that investigated their children's adherence to the Mediterranean diet (using the KidMed score) and variables related to their lifestyles, behavioral traits, and socio-economic factors. A multivariate logistic regression was performed to test the association between adherence to the Mediterranean diet and the other variables investigated. Most of the children involved in this study (73.9%) were classifiable as having a poor-to-moderate adherence to the Mediterranean diet. Higher odds of a poor adherence to the Mediterranean diet were associated with videogame playing for more than 1 h a day and lower levels of mothers' health consciousness. On the other hand, the odds were lower in association with more time spent practicing sport, higher levels of prosocial behavior, and with mothers having a high school education as opposed to fewer years of schooling.Conclusions: These results point to the need to consider the role of mothers' health consciousness and formal education in influencing their children's diets. Health promotion interventions should focus on the importance of a healthy overall lifestyle, which includes not only appropriate nutrition but also time spent on physical activity and leisure activities (such as playing videogames).What is Known:• Most of the children were classified as having a poor or moderate adherence to the Mediterranean diet. This result reflects a trend common to numerous countries of the Mediterranean area in recent years.• A mother's level of formal education influences her child's diet.What is New:• Higher levels of prosocial traits coincided with lower odds of a poor adherence to the Mediterranean diet.