Children’s Health, Physical Activity, and Nutrition

  • Alina MorawskaEmail author
  • Amy E. Mitchell


Health, nutrition and physical activity are fundamental to children’s development and well-being, and the early lifestyle habits that children acquire lay the foundation for a lifetime of behaviors that promote or undermine their health and well-being. This chapter overviews current issues in these domains of children’s functioning, and explores the role that parents play in supporting children’s health, nutrition, and physical activity. Parenting is embedded within a broader socioecological framework, and this chapter focuses on theories and empirical evidence which attempt to explain how parents influence children’s outcomes in these domains. This is an evolving area of research with significant implications for the health and well-being of not only children but also the adults they will become.


Health Physical activity Sedentary activity Nutrition Ecological models Parenting 



The Parenting and Family Support Centre is partly funded by royalties stemming from published resources of the Triple P—Positive Parenting Program, which is developed and owned by the University of Queensland (UQ). Royalties are also distributed to the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences at UQ and contributory authors of published Triple P resources. Triple P International (TPI) Pty Ltd. is a private company licensed by UniQuest Pty Ltd. on behalf of UQ, to publish and disseminate Triple P worldwide. The authors of this chapter have no share or ownership of TPI. Dr. Morawska receives royalties from TPI. TPI had no involvement in the writing of this chapter. Dr. Morawska and Dr. Mitchell are employees at UQ.

Funding: This work was supported by the Australian Research Council (DP140100781).


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Parenting and Family Support Centre, School of PsychologyThe University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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