The effectiveness of a physical activity and nutrition education program in the prevention of overweight in schoolchildren in Criciúma, Brazil

da Silva, L S M; Fisberg, M; de Souza Pires, M M; Nassar, S M; Sottovia, C B
November 2013
European Journal of Clinical Nutrition;Nov2013, Vol. 67 Issue 11, p1200
Academic Journal
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES:The objectives of this study were to evaluate nutritional status, aptitude and physical activity at the beginning and end of the nutrition education and physical activity intervention program as compared with a control group.METHODS:We conducted a 28-week quasi-experimental study involving 238 students (108 in the intervention group (IG) and 130 in the control group (CG)). The IG participated in curricular and extracurricular activities for nutrition education (50 min once a week) and physical activity (50 min twice a week), and the CG participated only in curricular activities. Nutritional status was determined using body mass index, according to the WHO 2007 curve. The effect of the intervention program was evaluated using a model of generalized estimating equations.RESULTS:Among overweight students, a greater reduction in percentile of BMI was observed in the IG (64.6%) compared with CG (36.4%), P=0.001. Improvement in nutritional status occurred in 26.2% of IG versus 10.4% of CG (P=0.014). The IG showed a significant increase in the amount of moderate or vigorous physical activity (P=0.012), whereas in the control group the increase was not significant (P=0.810). In three physical fitness tests, the IG showed significant improvements in performance (P<0.001), whereas the control group's performance was worse in the final evaluation.CONCLUSIONS:The intervention program had a positive effect on overweight, with significant improvements in nutritional status and physical fitness.


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