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Family Meal Practices and Weight Talk Between Adult Weight Management and Weight Loss Surgery Patients and Their Children

      Abstract

      Objective

      To identify predictors associated with specific family meal practices and weight talk among patients participating in weight management programs (WMPs) and weight loss surgery (WLS) and their children.

      Design

      Cross-sectional survey.

      Setting

      Two US weight management centers.

      Participants

      259 patients (aged ≥ 18 years) in either WMP (n = 101) or WLS (n = 158) and residing with a child (aged 2–18 years)

      Main Outcome Measure(s)

      Dependent variables: family meal practices (Project EAT) and weight talk (investigator-created). Covariates: family communication (Family Communication Scale), family discouragement for making eating habit change (Social Support for Eating Habits Survey), child age, sex, and perceived weight status, and WMP or WLS participation.

      Analysis

      Binomial and ordinal regression models determined the odds of engaging in specific family meal practices and weight talk, including covariates.

      Results

      Patients had increased odds of engaging in family dinners if they reported lower family discouragement (P = .003) and had younger children (P < .001), and increased odds of engaging in family breakfast if they had higher family communication (P = .002) and younger children (P = .020). Patients had increased odds of talking about their child's weight if their child was perceived to have an overweight/obese weight status (P < .001). Patients with older children had increased odds of talking about their weight with their child (P = .021).

      Conclusions and Implications

      Additional research assessing the family meal practices and weight talk in the families of adults pursuing weight loss could yield important evidence that could lead to improved patient outcomes, and safely promote healthy behaviors and prevention of obesity in children.

      Key Words

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