Maternal Employment and Children’s Nutrition: Volume I, Diet Quality and the Role of the CACFP
by Mary Kay Crepinsek, Nancy Burstein, and Linda M. Ghelfi
Electronic Publications from the Food Assistance & Nutrition Research Program No. (EFAN-04006-1) 153 pp, June 2004
Compared with children of nonworking mothers, children of full-time working mothers have
lower overall HEI (Healthy Eating Index) scores, lower intake of iron and fiber, and higher
intake of soda and fried potatoes, even after taking into account differences in maternal and
other family characteristics. Nutritional differences between children of part-time working
mothers and children of nonworking mothers were more sensitive to maternal and family
characteristics, with no clear pattern of nutritional differences emerging. This study analyzed
differences in nutrition outcomes among children whose mothers work full time, part time,
and not at all, and the role USDA's Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) plays in
meeting the nutrition needs of participating children, especially those whose mothers work.
Keywords: Food assistance, Child and Adult Care Food Program, CACFP, child nutrition, diet quality, nutrition, program outcomes, National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, Food Assistance and Nutrition Research Program, FANRP
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