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Nutrients. 2019 Mar 26;11(3). pii: E706. doi: 10.3390/nu11030706.

Assessment of the Effectiveness of a Computerised Decision-Support Tool for Health Professionals for the Prevention and Treatment of Childhood Obesity. Results from a Randomised Controlled Trial.

Author information

1
Department of Dietetics, Nutrition and Sport, School of Allied Health, Human Services and Sport, La Trobe University, Melbourne, VIC 3086, Australia. g.moschonis@latrobe.edu.au.
2
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, 70 El Venizelou Avenue, Kallithea, 17671 Athens, Greece. g.moschonis@latrobe.edu.au.
3
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, 70 El Venizelou Avenue, Kallithea, 17671 Athens, Greece. mariamichal95@gmail.com.
4
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, 70 El Venizelou Avenue, Kallithea, 17671 Athens, Greece. kontsou@gmail.com.
5
Department of Endocrinology-Growth and Development, Children's Hospital P. A. Kyriakou, 11527 Athens, Greece. elpis.vl@gmail.com.
6
Department of Endocrinology-Growth and Development, Children's Hospital P. A. Kyriakou, 11527 Athens, Greece. stmichalakos@gmail.com.
7
Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Diabetes, First Department of Pediatrics, University of Athens Medical School, Aghia Sophia Children's Hospital, 11527 Athens, Greece. echarmand@med.uoa.gr.
8
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Center of Clinical, Experimental Surgery and Translational Research, Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens, 11527 Athens, Greece. echarmand@med.uoa.gr.
9
Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Diabetes, First Department of Pediatrics, University of Athens Medical School, Aghia Sophia Children's Hospital, 11527 Athens, Greece. chrousge@med.uoa.gr.
10
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, 70 El Venizelou Avenue, Kallithea, 17671 Athens, Greece. manios@hua.gr.

Abstract

We examined the effectiveness of a computerised decision-support tool (DST), designed for paediatric healthcare professionals, as a means to tackle childhood obesity. A randomised controlled trial was conducted with 65 families of 6⁻12-year old overweight or obese children. Paediatricians, paediatric endocrinologists and a dietitian in two children's hospitals implemented the intervention. The intervention group (IG) received personalised meal plans and lifestyle optimisation recommendations via the DST, while families in the control group (CG) received general recommendations. After three months of intervention, the IG had a significant change in dietary fibre and sucrose intake by 4.1 and -4.6 g/day, respectively. In addition, the IG significantly reduced consumption of sweets (i.e., chocolates and cakes) and salty snacks (i.e., potato chips) by -0.1 and -0.3 portions/day, respectively. Furthermore, the CG had a significant increase of body weight and waist circumference by 1.4 kg and 2.1 cm, respectively, while Body Mass Index (BMI) decreased only in the IG by -0.4 kg/m². However, the aforementioned findings did not differ significantly between study groups. In conclusion, these findings indicate the dynamics of the DST in supporting paediatric healthcare professionals to improve the effectiveness of care in modifying obesity-related behaviours. Further research is needed to confirm these findings.

KEYWORDS:

children; healthcare professionals; intervention; nutrition; obesity; personalised

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