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Effectiveness of a Randomized School-Based Intervention Involving Families and Teachers to Prevent Excessive Weight Gain among Adolescents in Brazil

Citation

Cunha, Diana B.; de Souza, Bárbara da S. N.; Pereira, Rosangela Alves; & Sichieri, Rosely (2013). Effectiveness of a Randomized School-Based Intervention Involving Families and Teachers to Prevent Excessive Weight Gain among Adolescents in Brazil. PLOS ONE, 8(2), e57498. PMCID: PMC3581462

Abstract

Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness of a school-based intervention involving the families and teachers that aimed to promote healthy eating habits in adolescents; the ultimate aim of the intervention was to reduce the increase in body mass index (BMI) of the students.
Design: Paired cluster randomized school-based trial conducted with a sample of fifth graders.
Setting: Twenty classes were randomly assigned into either an intervention group or a control group.
Participants: From a total of 574 eligible students, 559 students participated in the study (intervention: 10 classes with 277 participants; control: 10 classes with 282 participants). The mean age of students was 11 years.
Intervention: Students attended 9 nutritional education sessions during the 2010 academic year. Parents/guardians and teachers received information on the same subjects.
Main Outcome Measurement: Changes in BMI and percentage of body fat. Results: Intention-to-treat analysis showed that changes in BMI were not significantly different between the 2 groups (β = 0.003; p = 0.75). There was a major reduction in the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and cookies in the intervention group; students in this group also consumed more fruits.
Conclusion: Encouraging the adoption of healthy eating habits promoted important changes in the adolescent diet, but this did not lead to a reduction in BMI gain. Strategies based exclusively on the quality of diet may not reduce weight gain among adolescents.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0057498

Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published

2013

Journal Title

PLOS ONE

Author(s)

Cunha, Diana B.
de Souza, Bárbara da S. N.
Pereira, Rosangela Alves
Sichieri, Rosely

PMCID

PMC3581462