Early childhood obesity prevention in low-income, Urban communities

Spring Dawson-Mcclure, Laurie Miller Brotman, Rachelle Theise, Joseph J. Palamar, Dimitra Kamboukos, R. Gabriela Barajas, Esther J. Calzada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Given the disproportionately high rates of obesity-related morbidity among low-income, ethnic minority youth, obesity prevention in this population is critical. Prior efforts to curb childhood obesity have had limited public health impact. The present study evaluates an innovative approach to obesity prevention by promoting foundational parenting and child behavioral regulation. This pre-post intervention study evaluated an enhanced version of ParentCorps with 91 families of pre-Kindergarten students in low-income, urban communities. Assessments included tests of knowledge and parent report. Consistent with findings from two randomized controlled trials of ParentCorps, parent knowledge and use of foundational parenting practices increased and child behavior problems decreased. Child nutrition knowledge and physical activity increased and television watching decreased; for boys, sleep problems decreased. Comparable benefits occurred for children at high risk for obesity based on child dysregulation, child overweight, and parent overweight. Results support a "whole child," family-centered approach to health promotion in early childhood.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)152-166
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Prevention and Intervention in the Community
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2014


  • early childhood
  • obesity
  • parenting
  • prevention community

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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