The nutritional health of mothers and their children is a central indicator of current and future population health, as the well-being of these individuals determines the overall health of the next generation. In placing an emphasis on maternal and child nutrition, we are able to ensure favorable health outcomes for children in various arenas, from physical growth to emotional development to prevention of chronic diseases, and beyond. Our research addresses the structural factors that influence child and maternal health both domestically and abroad. In doing so, we evaluate how different personal practices, early life characteristics, societal factors, and policy changes effect child and maternal health.
Policy Implications for Maternal and Child Nutrition
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) provides nutrition education and specific nutritious food to qualifying, low-income pregnant and lactating women as well as infants and children under the age of 5 years. In 2009, the government made significant changes to the WIC Program, updating the food packages to better align them with current dietary guidelines. Our research centers around the implications of this package change on childhood obesity outcomes, as well as the impact that WIC has on infant feeding practices and the overall health of preschool-aged children. To learn more about WIC and SNAP, please visit our Food Policy page.
- Anderson et al: The neighborhood food environment modifies the effect of the 2009 WIC food package change on childhood obesity in Los Angeles County, California
- Chaparro and Anderson et al: The new child food package is associated with reduced obesity risk among formula fed infants participating in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) in Los Angeles County, California
- Chaparro et al: The Association between the 2009 WIC Food Package Change and Early Childhood Obesity Risk Varies by Type of Infant Package Received
- Chaparro et al: The effect of the 2009 WIC food package change on childhood obesity varies by gender and initial weight status in Los Angeles County
- Chaparro et al: The 2009 Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) food package change and children's growth trajectories and obesity in Los Angeles County
- Langellier and Chaparro et al: The new food package and breastfeeding outcomes among women, infants, and children participants in Los Angeles County
- Anderson et al: Every month matters: Longitudinal associations between exclusive breastfeeding duration, child growth, and obesity among WIC-participating children
- Langellier and Chaparro et al: Social and institutional factors that affect breastfeeding among WIC participants in Los Angeles County, California
- Rose et al: Has the WIC Incentive to Formula-Feed Led to an Increase in Overweight Children?
- Chaparro et al: Effects of parental nativity and length of stay in the US on fruit and vegetable intake among WIC-enrolled preschool-aged children
- Chaparro et al: Influences of the neighborhood food environment on adiposity of low-income preschool-aged children in Los Angeles County: a longitudinal study
- Nobari, Wang, and Chaparro et al: Immigrant enclaves and obesity in preschool-aged children in Los Angeles County
- Chaparro et al: Predictors of accurate maternal perception of their preschool child's weight status among Hispanic WIC participants
- Rose et al: Household Participation in the Food Stamp and WIC Programs Increases the Nutrient Intakes of Preschool Children
Maternal and Child Nutrition in International Settings
Internationally, mothers and children face a unique set of nutritional issues. In these papers, we explore the potential causes and implications of these issues in regions ranging from Scandinavia to Eastern Africa. This collection of research spans infant feeding patterns, the relationship between maternal and child health, nutrition challenges beyond infancy and into childhood, and a handful of other related topics.
Much of research in this section was carried out alongside professionals from other universities and organizations, such as the Ministry of Health in Guinea, Michigan State University, Stockholm University, University of California – Los Angeles, University of Queensland, the Louisiana Department of Public Health, among a few other institutions.
- Chaparro, Koupil, and Byberg: Maternal pre-pregnancy body mass index and offspring body composition in young adulthood: The modifying role of offspring sex and birth order
- Chaparro et al: Childhood family structure and women’s adult overweight risk: a longitudinal study
- Chaparro, Ivarsson, and Koupil et al: Regional inequalities in pre-pregnancy overweight and obesity in Sweden, 1992, 2000 and 2010
- Chaparro and Koupil: The impact of parental educational trajectories on their adult offspring’s overweight/obesity status: a study of three generations of Swedish men and women
- Neumann, Oace, Chaparro et al: Low vitamin B12 intake during pregnancy and lactation and low breastmilk vitamin 12 content in rural Kenyan women consuming predominantly maize diets
- Rivers, Mason, Rose et al: The impact of orphanhood on food security in the high-HIV context of Blantyre, Malawi
- Hotchkiss, Mock, and Sieber: The effect of the health care supply environment on children's nutritional status in rural Nepal
- Welch, Mock et al: Health and nutrition in children under 2 years of age in three areas of the Russian Federation
- Rose et al: Infant mortality rates before, during, and after a nutrition and health intervention in rural Guatemalan villages
- Mock et al: Intra-household correlations in maternal-child nutritional status in rural Guinea: Implications for programme-screening strategies
- Mangani, Mock et al: Breast-feeding, water and sanitation, and childhood malnutrition in the Philippines
- Dikassa, Mock et al: Maternal Behavioural Risk Factors for Severe Childhood Diarrhoeal Disease in Kinshasa, Zaire
- Mock et al: The relationship between maternal and child nutritional status in rural Guinea
- Mock et al: Correlates and implications of breast-feeding practices in Bas Zaire
- Franklin, Bertrand and Mock el al: Feeding Patterns of Infants and Young Children in Kinshasa, Zaire
- Gussler and Mock: A comparative description of infant feeding practices in Zaire, the Philippines and St. Kitts‐Nevis