Strengthening parenting skills to prevent childhood overweight

Wednesday 8 February 2023, 2:30 pm
E.L.M. Ruiter drs.
prof. dr. G.R.M. Molleman, prof. dr. R.C.M.E. Engels, prof. dr. J. van der Velden
dr. G.A.J. Fransen-Kuppens

Parents play an important role in the development of their children’s dietary, physical activity, and sedentary behaviors. Unhealthy habits can lead to childhood overweight and subsequent health issues. This thesis shows which daily life situations parents of primary school children experience as difficult to stimulate healthy behavior. In addition, many parents of overweight children underestimate their child’s weight status. Experts have reached a consensus regarding which ‘HOW-advices’ help parents stimulate healthy behaviors in their child, see the app Using a theoretical problem-solving model and the above findings, we developed the e-learning for parents to strengthen parenting skills to stimulate healthy behavior in their child. Despite parents’ overall satisfaction with this e-learning, further research is needed to identify in which target group the e-learning is effective. Finally, it is important to recognize that merely strengthening parenting is not enough; indeed, It takes a healthy village to raise healthy children.

Emilie Ruiter received degrees in Biomedical Health Sciences (1998) and Medicine (2003) at Radboud University Nijmegen, after which she worked as a Youth Health Care doctor. In 2011, she started her PhD research at the academic collaborative center AMPHI at the Radboudumc. Currently, Emilie is a staff doctor Youth Health Care at GGD Gelderland-Zuid and a researcher at AMPHI.