Presentation on theme: "Perceptions of Childhood Obesity by Ethnic Groups and Amount of Media Use Heather Ruoti and Larry Rosen, Ph.D. California State University, Dominguez Hills."— Presentation transcript:
Perceptions of Childhood Obesity by Ethnic Groups and Amount of Media Use Heather Ruoti and Larry Rosen, Ph.D. California State University, Dominguez Hills Background Childhood obesity has reached world-wide epidemic proportions (Hardus, Van Vuuren, & Crawford, 2003). The overwhelming prevalence of obesity is alarming because obesity has been linked to numerous physical maladies and psychosocial problems including higher mortality rates, gastrointestinal disorders, Type 2 Diabetes, and depression (Daniels, 2006). Purpose The purpose of the present study was to assess the perceptions of different ethnic groups including - African-American, Asian-American, Caucasian, and Latino/a - of the causes and preventions of childhood obesity. A secondary goal was to compare the perceptions of childhood obesity between people who consume large amounts of media and those who do not. Participants N=201 Examples of Survey Questions Children’s Obesity Questionnaire (COQ) Developed by Hardus, Van Vuuren, & Crawford (2003), the COQ includes two subscales, factors that cause obesity in children (16 items) and best ways to prevent obesity in children (13 items). Sample items of the factors that cause obesity subscale include “Children don’t get enough exercise at school” while the best ways to prevent obesity in children scale includes items such as “Have daily physical education for all school children.” Internet Addiction Scale (IAS) Developed by Young (1998), the (IAS) includes one scale (20 items). Sample items of the IAS include “How often do you fear that life without the Internet would be boring empty and joyless?” and “How often do you try to hide how long you’ve been online?” Media use items Developed by Rosen, Cheever, and Carrier (2006), the media use items includes two subscales, media use Monday through Thursday and Friday through Sunday (14 items) and eating while using media (3 items). Sample items of media use included “On a typical Monday through Thursday, how many hours do you spend watching T.V.?” and “On a typical Friday through Sunday, how many hours do you spend watching T.V.?” Sample items on the eating while using media included “How often is the T.V. on while you are eating?” Conclusions While there were no significant differences between ethnic groups on the total scores of perceptions of childhood obesity factors and prevention methods, closer examination on each factor and prevention method found that there were ethnicities that scored significantly lower on the causes and preventions of obesity compared to others, indicating that some ethnic groups do vary on their views of what certain factors may cause or prevent childhood obesity. These factors were access to healthier foods, watching television while eating, more time playing video games and other technologies, not having enough safe walking paths, and reducing portion sizes as causes and preventions of childhood obesity. Findings support the secondary hypothesis that the perceptions of childhood obesity differ between individuals who consume large amounts of media and individuals who do not. Results Hypothesis 1 Perceptions of possible factors that cause childhood obesity and means of preventing childhood obesity varied from one ethnic group to another. This hypothesis was tested with OneWay ANOVA and significant differences were further examined using Tukey’s b Test. Too many children eating while watching television: Latino/a’s indicated that too many children eat while watching television compared to Caucasians. F(3,176) = 4.42, p =.005. Computer games, and other technologies make children obese: African-Americans and Latino/as indicated computer games, and other technologies make obesity worse compared to Asian-Americans and Caucasians. F(3,176) = 5.60, p <.001. Improving low income groups access to healthy foods prevent child obesity: African-Americans, Asian-Americans, and Latino/as indicated that improving low income groups access to healthy foods prevent of childhood obesity compared to Caucasians. F(3,176) = 5.71, p <.001 Hypothesis 2 Perceptions of childhood obesity would differ between individuals who consume large amounts of media and individuals who do not. Playing video games was correlated with the total obesity cause score: r(190) = -.33, p <.001 and the total obesity prevention score, r(189) = -.28, p <.001 These results show that participants who play more video games indicated that increased media use is not a cause of childhood obesity compared with those who play fewer video games. No other correlation was significant. Children in low-income groups cannot afford healthy foods: African-Americans, Asian-Americans, and Latino/as all indicated that children in low-income groups cannot afford healthy foods compared to Caucasians. F(3,176) = 4.11, p =.008.