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Research Project: Childhood Obesity Prevention

Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: The impact of acculturation level on weight status and weight outcomes in Mexican American children

Author
item Johnston, Craig - Children's Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)
item Cameron, Ryan - Sam Houston State University
item Lyons, Samuel - George Washington University
item Moreno, Jennette - Children's Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)
item Papaioannou, Maria - Children's Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)

Submitted to: Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/13/2012
Publication Date: 4/30/2013
Citation: Johnston, C.A., Cameron, R., Lyons, S., Moreno, J.P., Papaioannou, M.A. 2013. The impact of acculturation level on weight status and weight outcomes in Mexican American children [abstract]. Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference 2013, April 20-24, 2013, Boston, Massachusetts. 27:1063.25.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Currently 39% of Hispanic children and adolescents are overweight and obese. Higher levels of acculturation have been shown to be related to obesity in Mexican American adults. Conflicting findings exists regarding this relationship in children and little is known about the impact of acculturation on children's ability to lose weight. The purpose of the study was: 1) to examine acculturation's influence on weight status 2) determine the impact of acculturation on weight outcomes for children participating in a 6-month weight management intervention. Height, weight, and level of acculturation were measured in a sample of Mexican-American children. Binary logistic regression was conducted to determine if acculturation level was related to the likelihood of being overweight or obese. Repeated measures analysis of variance was performed to examine the effect of acculturation level (high vs low) on weight outcomes of Mexican American adolescents (n = 160). Children expressing low levels of acculturation were 1.72 times more likely to be overweight or obese and more acculturated children significantly reduced their zBMI when compared to less acculturated children at 24 months (t = 2.24, p < .027). The results of this study indicate a need for the development of weight management programs tailored to children expressing low levels of acculturation.