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A Feasibility Study of Group Parent Training for the Prevention of Obesity (GPT-O) in African Americans

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Technical Report

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Uniformed Services University Of The Health Sciences Bethesda United States

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The prevalence of overweight BMI greater than 85th percentile for age and sex has more than tripled in the past three decades 216. Prevalence is elevated among racial and ethnic minorities compared to the Caucasian population 215. Obesity prevention, especially among young children, has become paramount 228 286. The purpose of this study was to test the feasibility and acceptability of an 8-week group parent training for obesity prevention program GPT-O targeting parental self-efficacy in making lifestyle changes. Given limited intervention research among racial minorities, African Americans were specifically targeted. Participants were twenty African American parents and their overweightobese BMI z-score M 2.46, SD .93 children M 4. 10y, SD 1.48, 70 female. Parent participants completed feasibility questionnaires following the intervention. Measures of child participants body composition were collected at baseline, post-intervention, and three-month follow-up, and compared to a standard-of-care control group. Parents also completed questionnaires regarding parenting and child behaviors at baseline and post-intervention. Retention through post-intervention was 75 percent. Of these participants, average attendance was M 5.12, SD 2.12, of 8 sessions. Following the intervention, most parents reported that the group was acceptable 100 percent and feasible 78 percent. Expected BMI change did not differ between intervention and standard-of-care control youth from baseline to post-intervention p1.0 or from post-intervention to three-month follow-up p1.0. Following the intervention, parents reported improved parenting p less than 0.3 and feeding p .03 practices, as well as improved child eating related p .001, weight-related p .01, and general p .06 behavioral problems. Following the intervention, parents reported reductions in childrens daily caloric intake p.04, saturated fat intake p.04 and added sugars intake.

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