Outcomes of an Early Childhood Obesity Prevention Program in a Low-Income Community: A Pilot, Randomized Trial




Michelle M. Cloutier, James F. Wiley, Chia-Ling Kuo, Talea Cornelius, Zhu Wang, and Amy A. Gorin

Brief Type

Journal Publication


  • Parents as Teachers (PAT)


Background: Obesity is a major and worldwide health problem in children. Objectives: The Early Childhood Obesity Prevention Program is a multicomponent, randomized, controlled trial of a pilot community-focused obesity prevention program for mother/newborn dyads. Methods: Underserved, mother/newborn dyads were recruited to receive a standard home visitation program (Nurturing Families Network, NFN) or an enhanced program (NFN+) that incorporated behavioural change strategies (e.g., goal-setting, problem-solving) and focused on six obesity-associated behaviours (breastfeeding, juice/sugar-sweetened beverages, solids, infant sleep, TV/screen time and soothability) with linkages to community resources. Weight-for-length (WFL) z-score and maternal diet were secondary outcomes. Results: Fifty-seven dyads were recruited and 47 fully eligible dyads were enrolled (NFN = 21, NFN+ = 26). Forty-one (87.2%) were assessed at 6 months and 34 (72.3%) at 12 months. Retention at 12 months was higher for NFN+ dyads (84.6% vs. 56.1%, p = 0.04). NFN+ mothers were more likely to continue breastfeeding at 6 and 12 months vs. NFN mothers (p = 0.03 and 0.003, respectively), and at 12 months, NFN+ infants had fewer nocturnal awakenings (p = 0.04). There were no differences in other primary outcome measures or in WFL z-score at 6 or 12 months. Conclusions: A multi-component behavioural intervention increased breastfeeding duration and decreased nocturnal awakenings in infants of low-income families. (author abstract)

Data Collection Methods

  • Program administrative record reviews
  • Standardized assessment tools
  • Surveys or questionnaires



For More Information

Cloutier, M. M., Wiley, J. F., Kuo, C.-L., Cornelius, T., Wang, Z., & Gorin, A. A. (2018). Outcomes of an early childhood obesity prevention program in a low‐income community: A pilot, randomized trial. Pediatric Obesity, 13(11), 677–685. https://doi.org/10.1111/ijpo.12458
Author Contact Information:
Michelle M.Cloutier


  • Participant, Family, and Program Outcomes
  • Program Enhancements, Innovations, and Promising Approaches