UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Does parental and adolescent participation in an e-health lifestyle modification intervention improves weight outcomes? Tu, Andrew W; Watts, Allison W; Chanoine, Jean-Pierre; Panagiotopoulos, Constadina; Geller, Josie; Brant, Rollin; Barr, Susan I; Mâsse, Louise


Background: Few studies have evaluated the effect of adherence to a lifestyle intervention on adolescent health outcomes. The objective of this study was to determine whether adolescent and parental adherence to components of an e-health intervention resulted in change in adolescent body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) z-scores in a sample of overweight/obese adolescents. Methods: In total, 159 overweight/obese adolescents and their parents participated in an 8-month e-health lifestyle intervention. Each week, adolescents and their parents were asked to login to their respective website and to monitor their dietary, physical activity, and sedentary behaviours. We examined participation (percentage of webpages viewed [adolescents]; number of weeks logged in [parents]) and self-monitoring (number of weeks behaviors were tracked) rates. Linear mixed models and multiple regressions were used to examine change in adolescent BMI and WC z-scores and predictors of adolescent participation and self-monitoring, respectively. Results: Adolescents and parents completed 28% and 23%, respectively, of the online component of the intervention. Higher adolescent participation rate was associated with a decrease in the slope of BMI z-score but not with change in WC z-score. No association was found between self-monitoring rate and change in adolescent BMI or WC z-scores. Parent participation was not found to moderate the relationship between adolescent participation and weight outcomes. Conclusions: Developing strategies for engaging and promoting supportive interactions between adolescents and parents are needed in the e-health context. Findings demonstrate that improving adolescents’ adherence to e-health lifestyle intervention can effectively alter the weight trajectory of overweight/obese adolescents.

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