Promoting healthy weight in child care: pilot testing, training methodology, and instrument evaluation Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Benjamin, Sara Elizabeth
    • Affiliation: Gillings School of Global Public Health, Department of Nutrition
  • Rates of childhood overweight in the United States continue to rise at a steady and disconcerting pace. Childhood overweight is associated with a variety of adverse health consequences for children and the need to intervene is an important public health goal. Environmental interventions that promote healthy weight in young children may help prevent and mitigate childhood overweight, since eating and physical activity habits are established early in childhood and tend to track into adulthood. A large percentage of children spend time in child care, and duration of time in care has increased in recent years. Child care facilities may serve as a home-away-from-home setting, where children learn and adopt early nutrition and physical activity behaviors. Thus, child care providers can encourage healthy eating and promote regular physical activity for young children. The child care setting provides a unique opportunity to address healthy weight in children, but intervention efforts that target both nutrition and physical activity environment, policies, and practices are needed to support child level change. However, few preschool interventions have addressed nutrition and physical activity, although interest is growing in this area. The overarching goal of this dissertation was to promote the health of young children in child care through a nutrition and physical activity environmental intervention. This dissertation consisted of three distinct projects including pilot testing of a recently developed nutrition and physical activity environmental intervention; comparison of two methods to train community health professionals to deliver the intervention; and assessment of the reliability (test-retest and inter-rater) and validity of the self-assessment instrument which was a key component of the intervention.
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  • In Copyright
  • Ward, Dianne
  • Open access

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