Mediators of longitudinal associations between television viewing and eating behaviours in adolescents

Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Deakin University, 221 Burwood Highway, Victoria, 3125, Australia.
International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity (Impact Factor: 4.11). 03/2011; 8(1):23. DOI: 10.1186/1479-5868-8-23
Source: PubMed


Television viewing has been associated with poor eating behaviours in adolescents. Changing unhealthy eating behaviours is most likely to be achieved by identifying and targeting factors shown to mediate the association between these behaviours. However, little is known about the mediators of the associations between television viewing and eating behaviours. The aim of this study was to examine mediators of the longitudinal associations between television viewing (TV) and eating behaviours among Australian adolescents.
Eating behaviours were assessed using a web-based survey completed by a community-based sample of 1729 adolescents from years 7 and 9 of secondary schools in Victoria, Australia, at baseline (2004-2005) and two years later. TV viewing and the potential mediators (snacking while watching TV and perceived value of TV viewing) were assessed via the web-based survey at baseline.
Adolescents who watched more than two hours of TV/day had higher intakes of energy-dense snacks and beverages, and lower intakes of fruit two years later. Furthermore, the associations between TV viewing and consumption of energy-dense snacks, energy-dense drinks and fruit were mediated by snacking while watching TV. Perceived value of TV viewing mediated the association between TV viewing and consumption of energy-dense snacks, beverages and fruit.
Snacking while watching TV and perceived value of TV viewing mediated the longitudinal association between TV viewing and eating behaviours among adolescents. The efficacy of methods to reduce TV viewing, change snacking habits while watching TV, and address the values that adolescents place on TV viewing should be examined in an effort to promote healthy eating among adolescents.

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    • "Television viewing is proposed to contribute to increased energy intake and obesity risk (Swinburn and Shelly, 2008, Boulos et al., 2012). Epidemiological studies have shown an association between television viewing and children's dietary habits, such as lower intake of fruits and vegetables and higher intake of sugary and fast foods in high television viewing (Boynton-Jarrett et al., 2003, Wiecha et al., 2006, , Barr- Anderson et al., 2009, Pearson et al., 2011, Hare-Bruun et al., 2011, Olafsdottir et al., 2014a, Falbe et al., 2014). In addition, experimental studies have demonstrated that the content on television can influence younger (Halford et al., 2007, Dovey et al., 2011) and older (Halford et al., 2004, Halford et al., 2008, Harris et al., 2009) children's food intake. "
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    ABSTRACT: Studying other television content than advertisements is necessary in order to better understand the association between TV viewing and dietary habits. The aim of this study was to examine the nature and extent of verbal and visual appearance of food and beverage in children's programmes in Swedish public service television. The study object was the most popular children's TV programme in Sweden, broadcast by commercial-free public service television channel and watched almost daily by 45% of children under the age of 10 years. The analysed material consisted of 25 hours, broadcast at 21 occasions over almost a five-month period of the most popular TV viewing season. All appearances and type of food and beverages were coded as well as the context in which the foods were discussed or appeared. Chi square tests were performed to analyse if the occurrence of fruits and vegetables and high-calorie and low-nutrient (HCLN) foods respectively were associated with the context where food appeared. Mann-Whitney test was used to compare the representation of the two food groups in terms of degree of propensity to be consumed. Of the 287 programme sections, food or beverage appeared in 78%. Of the food appearances (n=773), HCLN foods constituted 19%, and fruits and vegetables 39%. More than half of the HCLN food appearances are with children, while only one third of the fruits and vegetables are shown with children. HCLN foods were more often shown being consumed or actively handled, than fruits and vegetables. Food and beverages appear frequently in children's programmes in Swedish public service television. HCLN foods seem to be represented as more attractive, by to a greater extent appearing consumed or actively handled in comparison with other foods. These foods were also frequently shown together with children while fruits and vegetables more frequently appeared with adults than children. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015 · International IJC
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    • "The numerous advertising that adolescences are exposed to were also found to stimulate unhealthy food consumption since advertising act as a distraction of actual food consumption(Pearson et al., 2011). For example, a survey was conducted on Australian children found that children who are heavy viewers of TV ads have more positive attitudes towards junk food (Grønhøj et al., 2013). "

    Full-text · Chapter · Jan 2015
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    • "Several studies have found a relationship between time spent viewing TV and dietary habits, such as a higher intake of sugary and fast foods as well as a lower intake of fruits and vegetables (Boynton-Jarrett et al. 2003; Giammattei et al. 2003; Lissner et al. 2012; McGowan et al. 2012; Miller et al. 2008). Longitudinal associations between television viewing and poor eating habits have also been observed (Barr-Anderson et al. 2009; Hare- Bruun et al. 2011; Pearson et al. 2011). Although studies have demonstrated that TV viewing predicts overweight and poor eating habits, this does not prove causality. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background/objectives: This longitudinal study describes the relationship between young children's screen time, dietary habits and anthropometric measures. The hypothesis was that television viewing and other screen activities at baseline result in increased consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB) and increased BMI, BMI z-score and waist to height ratio (WHtR) two years later. A second hypothesis was that SSB consumption mediates the association between the screen activities and changes in the anthropometric measures. Subjects/methods: The study is a part of the prospective cohort study IDEFICS ("Identification and prevention of dietary and lifestyle-induced health effects in children and infants"), investigating diet, lifestyle and social determinants of obesity in 2 to 9-year-olds in eight European countries (baseline n=16,225, two-year follow-up; n=11,038). Anthropometry was objectively measured, and behaviours were parent-reported. Results: The main hypothesis was supported, but the second hypothesis was not confirmed. The odds ratio of being in the highest quintile of % change in WHtR was 1.26 (95% CI: 1.17-1.36) and in BMI 1.22 (95% CI: 1.13-1.31), for each hour per day watching television. The odds ratio of having increased SSB consumption was 1.19 (95% CI: 1.09-1.29) for each hour per day watching TV. The associations for total screen time were slightly weaker. Conclusions: The results indicate substantial effects of TV viewing and other screen activities for young children, both on their consumption of sugary drinks and on an increase in BMI and central obesity. Our findings suggest that television viewing seems to have a stronger effect on food habits and anthropometry than other screen activities in this age group.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · European journal of clinical nutrition
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