The preschool years offer an opportunity to interrupt the trajectory toward obesity in black children. The Hip-Hop to Health Jr. Obesity Prevention Effectiveness Trial was a group-randomized controlled trial assessing the feasibility and effectiveness of a teacher-delivered weight control intervention for black preschool children. The 618 participating children were enrolled in 18 schools administered by the Chicago Public Schools. Children enrolled in the nine schools randomized to the intervention group received a 14-week weight control intervention delivered by their classroom teachers. Children in the nine control schools received a general health intervention. Height and weight, physical activity, screen time, and diet data were collected at baseline and postintervention. At postintervention, children in the intervention schools engaged in more moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) than children in the control schools (difference between adjusted group means = 7.46 min/day, P = 0.02). Also, children in the intervention group had less total screen time (27.8min/day, P = 0.05). There were no significant differences in BMI, BMI Z score, or dietary intake. It is feasible to adapt an obesity prevention program to be taught by classroom teachers. The intervention showed positive influences on physical activity and screen time, but not on diet. Measuring diet and physical activity in preschool children remains a challenge, and interventions delivered by classroom teachers require both intensive initial training and ongoing individualized supervision.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Nutrition and Dietetics