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A systematic review to determine the effectiveness of interventions designed to prevent overweight and obesity in pre‐adolescent girls
- Kesten, J. M., Griffiths, P. L., Cameron, N.
- Obesity reviews 2011 v.12 no.12 pp. 997-1021
- adolescent nutrition, adolescents, attitudes and opinions, childhood obesity, children, dieting, girls, health information, nutrition knowledge, physical activity, randomized clinical trials, risk factors, systematic review, weight control
- Childhood overweight/obesity is recognized as an increasing health problem. The objective of this review was to determine the effectiveness of interventions designed to prevent overweight and obesity in pre‐adolescent girls. The papers included were those studying children (must include results for girls) from within the 7–11 years age range from any country and ethnic background. The included interventions lasted at least 12 weeks and modified a combination of nutrition, physical activity, knowledge, attitudes or health‐related behaviours associated with the development of childhood overweight and obesity. Effect sizes were calculated where possible using Cohen's classifications of small (0.2–0.5), medium (0.5–0.8) and large (>0.8) effect sizes. Thirty studies met the inclusion criteria of which four were cluster randomized controlled trials, 14 were randomized controlled trials, 11 were controlled trials and one was a cohort pre–post trial. There were four weak, 11 moderate and 15 strong quality studies. Eleven studies were considered short term and 19 long term (≥12 months). There were 66 effect sizes less than 0.2, 56 categorized as low, 16 as medium and two as high. There is the potential for interventions aimed at pre‐adolescent girls to reduce the risk factors associated with childhood overweight and obesity, although the sustainability of the effects of such interventions is less clear.