An Exploratory Analysis of Child Feeding Beliefs and Behaviors Included in Food Blogs Written by Mothers of Preschool-Aged Children

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Abstract

Objective:

This study analyzed child feeding beliefs and behaviors, types of recipes, and their associations in blogs focused on child feeding.

Design:

The authors selected 13 blogs using purposive snowball sampling, from which 158 blog posts were sampled and coded using directed qualitative content analysis.

Variables Measured:

Child feeding beliefs and behaviors and types of recipes were coded using schemes developed from existing literature.

Analysis:

Code frequencies were calculated. Chi-square tests for independence examined associations between child feeding and recipe codes. Bonferroni corrections were applied: P < .05/(n tests).

Results:

Child feeding beliefs and behaviors were coded in 78% and 49% of posts, respectively. Beliefs about children's food preferences (48% of posts) and involving children in food preparation (27% of posts) were the most frequent codes. Recipes were included in 66% of posts. Most recipes were for mixed dishes (32% of recipes), followed by sweets and desserts (19% of recipes). Vegetable recipes were more likely in posts that included behavior encouraging balance and variety (χ2 [1, n = 104] = 18.54; P < .001).

Conclusions and Implications:

Blog posts contained information that may influence readers' child feeding practices. Future research should explore how mothers use blogs to learn about child feeding.

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