This project was funded by the NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme (project number 08/50/01) and be published in full in Health Technology Assessment, Vol. 13, No. 61. See the HTA Programme web site for further project information.
Systematic review of the effectiveness of weight management schemes for the under fives
Article first published online: 8 FEB 2010
© 2010 The Authors. obesity reviews © 2010 International Association for the Study of Obesity
Volume 12, Issue 4, pages 242–253, April 2011
How to Cite
Bond, M., Wyatt, K., Lloyd, J. and Taylor, R. (2011), Systematic review of the effectiveness of weight management schemes for the under fives. Obesity Reviews, 12: 242–253. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-789X.2010.00713.x
The views and opinions expressed therein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of Health.
This article was written by M. Bond, K. Wyatt, J. Lloyd and R. Taylor of University of Exeter. It is published with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen's Printer for Scotland.
- Issue published online: 8 FEB 2010
- Article first published online: 8 FEB 2010
- Received 2 September 2009; revised 9 December 2009; accepted 14 December 2009
- systematic review;
- weight management
Overweight and obesity in pre-school children are an increasing problem, with poor diet and exercise habits laying the foundation for serious health risks in later life. Yet most research into childhood obesity has focused on school-age children. Two previous systematic reviews of pre-school children have included uncontrolled designs and self-report outcomes potentially biasing the results in favour of the interventions. We have conducted a systematic review of the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of weight management schemes for the under fives restricting the inclusion criteria to controlled trials with objective measures. We found four effectiveness randomized controlled trials of prevention. No treatment or cost-effectiveness studies were found. Only one study in a Latino community showed a statistically significant advantage from the intervention in a slower rate of increase in body mass index. However, trends in decrease in body mass index and weight loss favoured the intervention groups in other studies. From the studies characteristics we hypothesize that important features to include in future interventions may be; cultural sensitivity, sustained moderate to vigorous exercise, active engagement of the parents in the programme and as role models of healthy living and active engagement of the children in nutrition education. Further randomized controlled trials are needed in this population.