Latino Families, Primary Care, and Childhood Obesity

Latino families more willing to participate in group classes and health coaching to control childhood obesity.

Latino children face multiple barriers to maintaining a healthy weight: lack of affordable healthy foods and dangerous neighborhoods.

These researchers designed a family-centered, community health center intervention to treat obesity.

Caregivers and children attended five weekly interactive group classes and received education about nutrition, physical activity, and stress management. Participants also received periodic coaching over six months (in person or by phone), to help them make lifestyle changes. Overall no differences were found in body mass index, metabolic markers, or activity levels between participants and a control group.

“These findings may be due to families requiring a more-intensive intervention that includes scheduled coaching and/or changes to the environmental context. The lack of significant findings may also be due to the small sample size,” the authors write.