Identifying elevated child weight from 3 to 24 months: Early transitions into nonparental care and to solid foods

Jennifer M. Barton, Alexandra Lundquist, Meghan C. Fisher, Barbara H. Fiese, Brent A. McBride

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Early entry into nonparental care (NPC) and introduction to solid foods (ITS) have been linked to elevated weight, however, little research exists on the combined influence of these transitions on child weight over time. Objectives: Identify groups of children based on early NPC and ITS timing and examine whether NPC-ITS groups differentially affect child weight over time. Method: Data were drawn from STRONG Kids2 (n = 468). Primary predictors include NPC (by 3M)-ITS (< or ≥6M) groups; outcome variables include child weight-for-length/height z-scores (WFL/WFHz) (3, 12, 18, and 24 months). Multilevel regression was used to examine the NPC-ITS groups as predictors of child WFL/WFHz. Results: Six groups were identified: 27% Parental Care-ITS before 6M, 31% Parental Care-ITS after 6M, 12% Daycare-ITS before 6M, 14% Daycare-ITS after 6M, 10% Kincare-ITS before 6M, and 7% Kincare-ITS after 6M. Children who were in daycare (regardless of ITS) or kincare-ITS before 6M demonstrated the highest WFL/WFHz over time, compared to their parental care counterparts. Conclusions: NPC-ITS combinations on child WFL/WFHz across the first 2 years of life highlight the need for a partnership approach among parental and nonparental caregivers to support the feeding of infants throughout the transition to solid foods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere13115
JournalPediatric Obesity
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2024


  • child weight
  • early childhood
  • infancy
  • introduction to solid foods
  • nonparental care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Health Policy
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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