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PLoS One. 2013;8(2):e57498. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0057498. Epub 2013 Feb 25.

Effectiveness of a randomized school-based intervention involving families and teachers to prevent excessive weight gain among adolescents in Brazil.

Author information

1
Department of Social Medicine, State University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. dianabcunha@gmail.com

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.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01046474.

PMID:
23451237
PMCID:
PMC3581462
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0057498
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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