Skip to main content
Intended for healthcare professionals
Restricted access
Research article
First published November/December 2003

The Family Context of an Intervention to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes in High-Risk Teens


This research describes the family context of eating and mealtime patterns in young adolescents at high risk for type 2 diabetes and the implications for preventing this disease.
Ten families, each consisting of a child and one parent, participated in individual, semistructured interviews that focused on family eating patterns. Topics included meal schedules, food preparation, family eating patterns, school eating patterns, and perception of the child's weight. Interviews were audiotaped, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed using focused summaries and thematic analysis methods.
Four main themes were identified: child and family eating patterns, perspectives on obesity, perspectives on weight control, and health concerns. Family eating patterns were often inconsistent, and few healthy eating models were available at home or school. Obesity was not always seen as a negative factor, particularly by the youth. Weight-control efforts were sporadic, typically unsuccessful, and consisted primarily of intermittent increases in physical activity. Parents did not actively participate in their child's weight-control efforts.
Effective interventions for obesity and prevention of type 2 diabetes in youth should include parents in both cognitive and behavioral strategies.

Get full access to this article

View all access and purchase options for this article.


1. Fagot-Campagna A, Pettit D, Engelgau M, et al. Type 2 diabetes among North American children and adolescents: an epidemiologic review and a public health perspective. J Pediatr. 2000;136:664-672.
2. Callahan ST, Mansfield MJ. Type 2 diabetes mellitus in adolescents. Curr Opinions Pediatr. 2000;12: 310-315.
3. Haire-Joshu D, Nanney MS. Prevention of overweight and obesity in children: influences on the food environment. Diabetes Educ. 2002;28:415-423.
4. Flegal KM. The obesity epidemic in children and adults: current evidence and research issues. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1999;31 (11 [suppl 1]):S509-S519.
5. Levetan C. Into the mouths of babes: the diabetes epidemic in children. Clin Diabetes. 2001;19: 102-104.
6. Hood MY, Moore LL, Sundarajan-Ramamurti A, Singer M, Cupples LA, Ellison RC. Parental eating attitudes and the development of obesity in children. The Framingham Children's Study. Int J Obes. 2000;24: 1319-1325.
7. Cutting TM, Fisher JO, Grimm-Thomas K, Birch LL. Like mother, like daughter: familial patterns of overweight are mediated by mothers' dietary disinhibition. Am J Clin Nutr. 1999; 69:608-613.
8. Wardle J, Guthrie C, Sanderson S, Birth L, Plomin R. Food and activity preferences in children of lean and obese parents. Int J Obes. 2001;25:971-977.
9. Gillman MW, Rifus-Shiman SL, Frazier AL, et al. Family dinner and diet quality among older children and adolescents. Arch Fam Med. 2000;9:235-240.
10. Golan M, Weizman A, Apter A, Fainaru M. Parents as the exclusive agents of change in the treatment of childhood obesity. Am J Clin Nutr. 1998;67: 1130-1135.
11. De Bourdeaudhuij I. Perceived family members' influence on introducing healthy food into the family. Health Educ Res. 1997;12: 77-90.
12. Tibbs T, Haire-Joshu D, Schechtman KB, et al. The relationship between parental modeling, eating patterns, and dietary intake among African-American parents. J Am Diet Assoc. 2001;101:535-541.
13. Fisher L, Chesla CA, Bartz RJ, et al. The family and type 2 diabetes: a framework for intervention. Diabetes Educ. 1998;24: 599-607.
14. Marshall C, Rossman G. Designing Qualitative Research. 3rd ed. Thousand Oaks, Calif: Sage Publications; 1999.
15. Epstein LH, Paluch RA, Gordy CC, Dorn J. Decreasing sedentary behaviors in treating pediatric obesity. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2000;154:220-226.
16. Jain A, Sherman SN, Chamberlin LA, Carter Y, Powers SW, Whitaker RC. Why don't low-income mothers worry about their preschoolers being overweight? Pediatrics. 2001; 107:1138-1146.

Cite article

Cite article

Cite article


Download to reference manager

If you have citation software installed, you can download article citation data to the citation manager of your choice

Share options


Share this article

Share with email
Share on social media

Share access to this article

Sharing links are not relevant where the article is open access and not available if you do not have a subscription.

For more information view the SAGE Journals article sharing page.

Information, rights and permissions


Published In

Article first published: November/December 2003
Issue published: November/December 2003

Rights and permissions

Request permissions for this article.


Issue published: November/December 2003
Published online: September 3, 2016
PubMed: 14692373



Esther S. Seibold, MSN, CPNP
Yale University School of Nursing, New Haven, Connecticut; 435 Ridge Road, Hamden, CT 06517 [email protected]
Margaret Grey, RN, DrPH
Yale University School of Nursing, New Haven, Connecticut

Metrics and citations


Journals metrics

This article was published in The Science of Diabetes Self-Management and Care.


Article usage*

Total views and downloads: 74

*Article usage tracking started in December 2016

Articles citing this one

Web of Science: 12 view articles Opens in new tab

Crossref: 14

  1. Use of Focus Groups to Inform a Youth Diabetes Prevention Model
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  2. Training At-Risk Youth to Become Diabetes Self-management Coaches for ...
    Go to citation Crossref Google ScholarPub Med
  3. Stressed Out and Overcommitted! The Relationships Between Time Demands...
    Go to citation Crossref Google ScholarPub Med
  4. An integrative literature review of lifestyle interventions for the pr...
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  5. Self-management in Type 2 Diabetes
    Go to citation Crossref Google ScholarPub Med
  6. Ecological Differences in Weight, Length, and Weight for Length of Mex...
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  7. Effects of lifestyle habits and eating meals together with the family ...
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  8. Comparisons of Parent Cardiovascular Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behavio...
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  9. Interventions for the Family with Diabetes
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  10. Perceptions of Children's Body Sizes Among Mothers Living on the Texas...
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  11. Family patterns of decision-making in pediatric clinical trials
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  12. Parent Perceptions of Caring for Adolescents With Type 2 Diabetes
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  13. The Care of Children and Adolescents With Type 2 Diabetes
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar
  14. Mothers' Explanatory Models of Lack of Child Growth
    Go to citation Crossref Google Scholar

Figures and tables

Figures & Media


View Options

Get access

Access options

If you have access to journal content via a personal subscription, university, library, employer or society, select from the options below:

ADCES members can access this journal content using society membership credentials.

ADCES members can access this journal content using society membership credentials.

Alternatively, view purchase options below:

Purchase 24 hour online access to view and download content.

Access journal content via a DeepDyve subscription or find out more about this option.

View options


View PDF/ePub