Paediatric nutrition is of growing concern in many countries with regards to the escalating number of childhood obesity. This study endeavours to (i) Determine how parental style is related to healthy eating habits in children, (ii) Establish any relationship between the sociodemographic status of the parents and healthy eating and to (iii) Collect views following school canteen Regulation 2009 in Mauritius. A cross-sectional survey was carried out in Mauritius, whereby questionnaires were distributed to mothers of children aged 2-11 years (n = 289). Information collected were mother`s demographic background, monitoring, disciplining, controlling styles and a specific food frequency was also included. Data was analysed using Chi-Square test and Factor Analysis. Monitoring and disciplining styles were found to be significantly (p<0.05) related to healthy eating. Demographic variables enquired were found to be significantly (p<0.05) associated to healthy eating. Parents with high income were reported to be better off to provide a healthy nutrition to their ward. Children found to be eating healthily were those whose mothers were aged above 30 years and working as professionals. Moreover, urban dwellers were found to have a healthier eating activity compared to rural one. Most parents were satisfied with the new canteen regulation but mothers reported that their wards still buy junk foods from school neighbouring shops. Hence, results from the present study can be exploited as baseline data to address the nutrition education of Mauritians children.
Kevina Honajee, Fawzi M. Mahomoodally, Anwar H. Subratty and Deerajen Ramasawmy, 2012. Is Parenting Style and Sociodemographic Status of Parents Related to Childrens Healthy Eating Activity in a Multicultural Society Like Mauritius?. Asian Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 4: 151-159.