|Poston, Walker Carlos|
|Haddock, C. Keith|
Submitted to: Obesity Research
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/1/2005
Publication Date: 9/1/2005
Citation: Johnston, C., Tyler, C., Foreyt, J., Reeves, R., Poston, W.C., Haddock, C.K., Ortega, A., Fullerton, G. 2005. Evaluation of an extended school day weight loss program for Mexican American children [abstract]. Obesity Research. 13:A145. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: The rates of childhood overweight have increased significantly in the past 20 years, with the highest rates in ethnic minority populations, especially in Mexican Americans. Schools have been identified as an optimal setting for prevention efforts; however, few intervention programs have demonstrated actual decreases in BMI. The current study evaluated a 12-week extended day school program designed to result in weight reduction for Mexican American children. Children were between the ages of 10 and 14 (M = 12.58, SD = .70) and in the 6th (n = 37) or 7th (n = 18) grade. A total of 53 (96%) children identified as Mexican American. A total of 55 (31 males) children that exceeded the 85th percentile for BMI were randomized into intensive intervention (II) or self-help (SH). The II condition (n= 34) received nutrition education that included lifestyle change techniques once a week and participated in physical activity the other 4 days of the week. In addition, monthly meetings were held that included the entire family. The SH condition (n=21) received a book that was intended to promote a healthy diet, physical activity, and lifestyle change techniques. The II was led by program staff, while the SH condition was led by parents. Repeated Measures ANOVA was used to evaluate weight changes between the groups using standardized BMIs from baseline to 3 months. Children in the intensive intervention condition significantly reduced their BMI z-score when compared to the children in the self-help condition as demonstrated by a significant time by condition interaction effect (F (1,53) = 4.86, p = .032). A main effect for time also was found (F (1,53) = 5.12, p = .028); however, this was due to the changes in the II participants, as the SH participants did not experience a change in BMI z-scores over time. Overall, the results are promising, suggesting that an extended school day program may be an effective means for promoting weight loss in overweight Mexican American children.