Date of Award


Document Type


First Advisor

Lynch, Dr. Patricia A.


This pilot study was conducted to describe parental feeding factors and explore the association between these factors and region of residence. Data was collected from 60 parents of children ages 2-11 in the form of a self-administered questionnaire. Thirty participants resided in a rural community and 30 resided in an urban community in North Carolina. Of the respondents, 87% were mothers, 50% were African Americans, 25% were Caucasians, and 20% were Hispanic Americans. This study’s findings indicated a significant difference in the frequency of consumption of home cooked meals (p=0.002). The intake of fruits (p=0.000), vegetables (p=0.001), meat, fish and poultry (p=0.034) was significantly higher in rural participants than urban participants (significance found at p<0.05). Parents from rural communities scored higher on scales of food restriction and pressure to eat than parents from urban communities. Recognizing the differences in feeding behaviors of parents may be influential in the development of future childhood obesity prevention programs that will involve parents.