Home-exercise Childhood Obesity Intervention: A Randomized Clinical Trial Comparing Print Versus Web-based (Move It) Platforms

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Abstract

Purpose:

To compare the impact of adhering to a Mediterranean diet plus mixed physical exercise program (Move-It) implemented by means of printed instructions or via a web-platform (with or without e-mail support) on body composition, physical fitness, and blood pressure.

Design and Methods:

Randomized clinical trial. Fifty-two overweight or obese Spanish children and adolescents were randomly assigned to the print-based (n = 18), Move-It (n = 18), or Move-It plus support (n = 16) intervention groups. Two-way mixed ANOVA tests were used to compare any changes between the groups in terms of percentage body fat, physical fitness (VO2peak), handgrip strength, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The measurements were taken before and after a three-month mixed-exercise (aerobic and resistance) and Mediterranean-diet program which was either implemented by means of printed instructions or via a web-platform (with or without e-mail support).

Results:

No statistical differences were found between groups. However, the results highlighted significant improvements in body fat percentage metrics over time for all three groups (print-based: −1.8%, 95%CI −3.3% to −0.3%; Move-It: −1.8%, 95%CI −3.3% to −0.3%; Move-It plus support: −2.0%, 95%CI −3.7% to −0.4%, P < 0.05). We also observed a tendency towards improvement in the VO2peak, handgrip strength, and blood pressure variable values 10 min after the exercise-stress test in these three groups.

Conclusions:

The program improved the body composition, regardless of the way it is implemented.

Practice Implications:

A mixed physical exercise program lasting for three months, combined with a Mediterranean diet, improves the body composition of children and adolescents with overweight/obesity.

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