Development of an evidence-based practice guideline for UK public health nurses (health visitors) to use with parents of infants at risk of obesity.
AffiliationAnglia Ruskin University
University of Nottingham
University of Lincoln
CityCare Partnership, United Kingdom
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AbstractEvidence about effective interventions that reduce obesity risk during infancy is needed. A systematic review of Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) of behavioural and non-behavioural interventions which address potential risk factors for childhood overweight and obesity was undertaken to inform a guideline for UK health visitors. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines were followed. The findings were used to develop a guideline which was reviewed internally by a multi-professional Guideline Development Group (GDG) and externally by national experts and practitioners. We identified 35 RCTs reporting behavioural and non-behavioural interventions delivered antenatally and/or during infancy that included infant weight outcomes (e.g. weight-for-length, weight-for-age, weight-for-BMI) or outcomes related to obesity risk (breastfeeding, physical activity, timing of weaning). A number of on-going trials were identified. Good evidence exists for breastfeeding promotion and support interventions. Evidence exists for parental education around responsive feeding, aspects of infant diet and soothing/sleep expectations. These behavioural components informed the guideline, which is freely available on the UK Institute for Health Visiting website. There was equivocal evidence that infants fed lower protein (compared to higher protein) formula milk gained less weight, and this was not incorporated into the guideline. Further research is needed to establish clinically effective interventions for obesity prevention during infancy. Continuous dialogue between commissioners, policy makers, health visitors and parents is essential to inform obesity prevention strategies in the first year of life.
CitationRedsell, S.A., Edmonds, B.A., Glazebrook, C., Swift, J.A., Nathan, D., Siriwardena, A.N., Weng, S.F., Atkinson, P. and Watson, V., (2013). 'Development of an evidence-based practice guideline for UK public health nurses (health visitors) to use with parents of infants at risk of obesity [Poster]. Exhibited at the European Childhood Obesity Group Congress, Liverpool, UK, 12-15 November.