Time 2 tlk 2nite: Use of electronic media by adolescents during family meals and associations with demographic characteristics, family characteristics, and foods served

Jayne A. Fulkerson, Katie Loth, Meredith Bruening, Jerica Berge, Marla E. Eisenberg, Dianne Neumark-Sztainer

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    24 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    We examined the frequency of adolescents' use of electronic media (ie, television/movie watching, text messaging, talking on the telephone, listening to music with headphones, and playing with hand-held games) at family meals and examined associations with demographic characteristics, rules about media use, family characteristics, and the types of foods served at meals using an observational, cross-sectional design. Data were drawn from two coordinated, population-based studies of adolescents (Project Eating Among Teens 2010) and their parents (Project Families and Eating Among Teens). Surveys were completed during 2009-2010. Frequent television/movie watching during family meals by youth was reported by 25.5% of parents. Multivariate logistic regression analyses indicated significantly higher odds of mealtime media use (P<0.05) for girls and older teens. In addition, higher odds of mealtime media use (P<0.05) were also seen among those whose parents had low education levels or were black or Asian; having parental rules about media use significantly reduced these odds. Frequent mealtime media use was significantly associated with lower scores on family communication (P<0.05) and scores indicating less importance placed on mealtimes (P<0.001). Furthermore, frequent mealtime media use was associated with lower odds of serving green salad, fruit, vegetables, 100% juice, and milk at meals, whereas higher odds were seen for serving sugar-sweetened beverages (P<0.05). The ubiquitous use of mealtime media by adolescents and differences by sex, race/ethnicity, age, and parental rules suggest that supporting parents in their efforts to initiate and follow-through on setting mealtime media use rules may be an important public health strategy.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1053-1058
    Number of pages6
    JournalJournal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
    Volume114
    Issue number7
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jul 2014

    Keywords

    • Adolescents
    • Family meals
    • Healthful foods
    • Media
    • Parents

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Food Science
    • Nutrition and Dietetics

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