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Objective Inaccurate parental perception of their child's weight status is commonly reported in Western countries. It is unclear whether similar misperception exists in Asian populations. This study aimed to evaluate the ability of Singaporean mothers to accurately describe their three-year-old child's weight status verbally and visually. Methods At three years post-delivery, weight and height of the children were measured. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated and converted into actual weight status using International Obesity Task Force criteria. The mothers were blinded to their child's measurements and asked to verbally and visually describe what they perceived was their child's actual weight status. Agreement between actual and described weight status was assessed using Cohen's Kappa statistic (κ). Results Of 1237 recruited participants, 66.4% (n = 821) with complete data on mothers' verbal and visual perceptions and children's anthropometric measurements were analysed. Nearly thirty percent of the mothers were unable to describe their child's weight status accurately. In verbal description, 17.9% under-estimated and 11.8% over-estimated their child's weight status. In visual description, 10.4% under-estimated and 19.6% over-estimated their child's weight status. Many mothers of underweight children over-estimated (verbal 51.6%; visual 88.8%), and many mothers of overweight and obese children under-estimated (verbal 82.6%; visual 73.9%), their child's weight status. In contrast, significantly fewer mothers of normal-weight children were inaccurate (verbal 16.8%; visual 8.8%). Birth order (p


Psychiatry and Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences

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Public Library of Science

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License. (49 kB)

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Cheng T.S.; Cheng T.; Loy S.; Cheung Y.; Chan J.; Tint M.; Godfrey K.; Gluckman P.; Kwek K.; Saw S.; Chong Y.; Lee Y.; Yap F.; Lek N.; Sheppard A.; Chinnadurai A.; Goh A.; Rifkin-Graboi A.; Qiu A.; Biswas A.; Lee B.; Broekman B.; Quah B.; Shuter B.; Chng C.; Ngo C.; Hsu S.; Bong C.; Henry C.; Chee C.; Fok D.; Yeo G.; Inskip H.; Chen H.; Van Bever H.; Magiati I.; Wong I.; Lau I.; Kapur J.; Richmond J.; Holbrook J.; Gooley J.; Tan K.; Niduvaje K.; Singh L.; Su L.; Daniel L.; Shek L.; Fortier M.; Hanson M.; Chong M.; Rauff M.; Chua M.; Meaney M.; Teoh O.; Wong P.; Agarwal P.; Van Dam R.; Rebello S.; Chong S.; Cai S.; Soh S.; Lim S.; Rajadurai V.; Stunkel W.; Han W.; Pang W.; Goh Y.; Chan Y.