Impact of a nutrition and health education program on obese children
Weekley, Arielle Jordan
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of the Health Matters for Families Childhood Obesity Program, a nutrition and health education intervention on lifestyle habits of obese children and their caregivers. This was a feasibility study that enrolled clinically diagnosed obese children (N=30) between 4-17 years. The intervention was individualized, culturally tailored, conducted within a clinical setting, and consisted of 6 face-to-face sessions of nutrition and health education. Although no statistically significant behavioral change was observed, preliminary results show improvements in the following daily behaviors: physical activity (<60 minutes), screen time (<2hrs), and sleep duration (>8hrs). Favorable changes were also observed in beverage consumption, snacking frequency/quality, and regular mealtime habits. No improvement in fruit and vegetable consumption was found based on the preliminary results. Further research with a larger sample size is needed to examine the effectiveness of childhood obesity interventions within clinical settings.