All are invited to the CEDAR/MRC Epidemiology Seminar:
How do local food environment factors and psychosocial factors affect the dietary behaviours of mothers with young children and what are the implications for dietary inequalities?
by Dr Janis Baird and Dr Christina Vogel, of MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology, University of Southampton.
Quality of diet is associated with level of disadvantage: findings from the Southampton Women’s Survey demonstrate that women with lower levels of educational attainment have significantly poorer diet quality than those with higher attainment. The poor diets of mothers with low educational attainment are of concern not only for their own health but particularly for the short- and long-term health of their children. A number of psychological and social factors, including self-efficacy and sense of control, have been associated with mothers’ level of educational attainment and dietary quality, but understanding of how local environmental factors interact with individual level factors in determining diet is more limited.
This seminar will focus on a programme of observational and complex intervention research that aims to understand and improve the dietary behaviours of women of childbearing age from disadvantaged backgrounds. We will describe the findings of our observational research examining associations between local food environment factors, individual factors and the dietary behaviours of mothers with young children, and will outline how our observational findings are being translated into complex community-based interventions.
Janis Baird is Associate Professor of Public Health Medicine at the MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit, University of Southampton. Her research focuses on the translation of evidence of the developmental origins of health and disease into public health policy and practice. Janis co-leads a series of complex intervention studies which aim to improve the health and nutrition of women of childbearing age, with a particular focus on reducing inequalities. As well as having extensive experience of systematic review, she also has an interest in process evaluation and between 2011 and 2014 Janis chaired a group of researchers, funded by the Medical Research Council, who developed guidance on process evaluation within complex intervention studies.
Since 2009, Janis Baird and Christina Vogel have carried out research to characterise the food environments of women living in Southampton and explore their influence on women’s dietary quality. Their observational work is now informing the development of multi-level interventions which aim to improve diet by combining environmental strategies with individual-level behaviour change. Read more.
Christina Vogel (nee Black) has had a long term interest in understanding what is it that makes people choose to eat the foods they do and, accordingly, completed undergraduate training in Nutrition and Dietetics and in Psychology at the Newcastle University, Australia. Christina has worked in public health nutrition for ten years in Australia and Europe. Her work has involved designing and delivering programs in remote indigenous and urban communities, conducting population health observational and intervention research, and developing public health policy. Christina has worked at the Medical Research Council Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit, University of Southampton, UK since 2009. She is part of the team that designed, implemented and evaluated the ‘Healthy Conversations Skills’ workforce development intervention and has developed a programme of observational research to enhance understanding of how the local food environment affects the dietary behaviours of mothers with young children.
Supported by an NIHR Doctoral Research Fellowship, Christina completed her PhD in 2014. Her research is the first in the UK to examine the psychosocial and educational pathways between the local food environment and dietary behaviours. She has developed a number of novel environmental metrics to describe place-health relations. Her work in structural equation modelling has been used to identify environmental, social and psychological focal points for an intervention to improve the dietary behaviours of mothers and their families which is in the early stage of development. Read more.
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