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This study focuses on a set of eating habit questions proposed for inclusion in the U.S. Department of Education's Early Childhood Longitudinal Survey, Birth Cohort. The study assesses the wording and format of a series of questions for mothers of children in kindergarten and/or first grade regarding the child’s food consumption habits. Most mothers were able to answer questions on their child's eating habits by using a variety of recall strategies or by using references. Most mothers used recall strategies, such as the recall of preferences and special events or a child’s specific likes or dislikes. They also used references, such as the presence of a menu or snacking policies at school. Mothers did not generally struggle with terminology, but some words and concepts required clarification. The biggest problem in answering the questions was the combination of not remembering what foods were eaten and the desire to reflect socially acceptable and beneficial eating behaviors.


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