A Health-Literacy Intervention for Early Childhood Obesity Prevention: A Cluster-Randomized Controlled Trial.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Children who become overweight by age 2 have greater risk of long-term obesity and health problems. The study aim was to assess the effectiveness of a primary care-based intervention on the prevalence of overweight at age 24 months. METHODS: In a cluster-randomized trial, sites were randomly assigned to the Greenlight intervention or an attention-control arm. Across 4 pediatric residency clinics, we enrolled infant-caregiver dyads at the 2-month well-child visit. Inclusion criteria included parent English- or Spanish-speaking and birth weight ≥1500 g. Designed with health-literacy principles, the intervention included a parent toolkit at each well-child visit, augmented by provider training in clear-health communication. The primary outcome was proportion of children overweight (BMI ≥85th percentile) at age 24 months. Secondary outcomes included weight status (BMI z score). RESULTS: A total of 459 intervention and 406 control dyads were enrolled. In total, 49% of all children were overweight at 24 months. Adjusted odds for overweight at 24 months (treatment versus control) was 1.02 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.63 to 1.64). Adjusted mean BMI z score differences (treatment minus control) were -0.04 (95% CI: -0.07 to -0.01), -0.09 (95% CI: -0.14 to -0.03), -0.19 (-0.33 to -0.05), -0.20 (-0.36 to -0.03), -0.16 (95% CI: -0.34 to 0.01), and 0.00 (95% CI -0.21 to 0.21) at 4, 6, 12, 15, 18, and 24 months, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The intervention resulted in less weight gain through age 18 months, which was not sustained through 24 months. Clinic-based interventions may be beneficial for early weight gain, but greater intervention intensity may be needed to maintain positive effects.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Sanders, LM; Perrin, EM; Yin, HS; Delamater, AM; Flower, KB; Bian, A; Schildcrout, JS; Rothman, RL; Greenlight Study Team,

Published Date

  • May 1, 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 147 / 5

PubMed ID

  • 33911032

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8086006

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1098-4275

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1542/peds.2020-049866


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States