Physical characteristics of the environment and BMI of young urban children and their mothers

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The study examined whether characteristics of the urban physical environment are associated with child and maternal body mass index (BMI) in a sample of 3 year-old children and their mothers from 18 US cities (N=1997 dyads). BMI was determined based on measured height and weight. Characteristics of the interior and exterior physical environment, assessed and rated by trained interviewers, were related to child BMI at age 3 and to their mother's BMI. Negative aspects of the physical environment were more strongly related to maternal BMI among whites than among African–Americans or Hispanics.

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