Background. Hispanic children carry a disproportionate burden of prolonged bottle use and associated disease. Children in low-income households who use the bottle beyond age 12 months are at risk for iron deficiency anemia, obesity, and early childhood dental caries.

Purpose. The purpose of this study was to identify predictors of intention to wean from the bottle among low-income Hispanic mothers of infants enrolled in the Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC).

Method. A convenience sample of 266 low-income Hispanic mothers of infants age 5 to 14 months old were categorized into four groups by experience weaning a child from the bottle (new mother or experienced mother), and by language preference (English or Spanish). Intention was regressed on attitude, subjective norm and perceived behavioral control for the total sample, and for each of the four subject groups. Each core TpB construct was regressed on the appropriate composite variables for the total sample, then for each of the four language-experience groups.

Results. For all subjects, the TpB variables robustly predicted intention to wean (R2 = .63, p< .001). The strongest predictor was perceived behavioral control (P = .38), followed by subjective norm (P = .30), and attitude (P = .26, each p < .001). The belief composite variables explained significant variance in TpB constructs (p < .001): 9 9 9 subjective norm (R2 = .58), attitude (R2 = .33), and perceived behavioral control (R2 = .12). The associations among TpB constructs varied depending on language and weaning experience of the mother.

Conclusion. Weaning interventions need to be designed within the context of language and experience for low-income Hispanic mothers, as the importance of beliefs differs depending on these variables.


School of Public Health

First Advisor

Helen Hopp Marshak

Second Advisor

Naomi Modeste

Third Advisor

Christine Neish

Degree Name

Doctor of Public Health (DrPH)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Bottle Feeding -- psychology; Feeding Behavior; Age Factors; Health Knowledge; Attitudes; Practice Weaning; Parents -- education; Hispanic Americans; Socioeconomic Factors; Evaluation Studies



Page Count

xi; 139

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives