Effectiveness of a paediatric weight management intervention for rural youth (iAmHealthy): Primary outcomes of a cluster randomised control trial.

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DOI: 10.1111/ijpo.13094


BACKGROUND: Youth in rural areas are disproportionally affected by obesity. Given the unique barriers rural populations face, tailoring and increasing access to obesity interventions is necessary.

OBJECTIVE: This paper evaluates the effectiveness of iAmHealthy, a family-based paediatric obesity intervention delivered to rural children, compared to a Newsletter Control.

METHODS: Participating schools (n = 18) were randomly assigned to iAmHealthy or Newsletter Control. iAmHealthy consists of individual health coaching and group sessions delivered via televideo to a participant's home. The child and parent's body mass index (BMI), child physical activity and child dietary intake were assessed at baseline, post-treatment (8 months) and follow-up (20 months). Multilevel modeling estimated the effect of treatment at both time points.

RESULTS: Parent and child dyads were recruited (n = 148) and randomised to iAmHealthy (n = 64) or the Control group (n = 84). The Control group had significant increases in child BMIz from baseline to follow-up. iAmHealthy youth had no significant changes in BMIz from baseline to post or follow-up. Child dietary intake, physical activity and parent BMI results are also discussed.

CONCLUSIONS: This trial extends previous paediatric obesity work by simultaneously increasing convenience and dose of treatment. Results suggest iAmHealthy resulted in a change in BMIz trajectories and long-term health behaviour for youth.

Journal Title

Pediatr Obes





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MeSH Keywords

Child; Humans; Adolescent; Pediatric Obesity; Rural Population; Body Mass Index; Health Behavior; Health Promotion


mHealth; overweight; paediatric obesity; rural; telehealth

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