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OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to determine 5-year outcomes from a 12-month, family-based, multidisciplinary lifestyle intervention program for children. METHODS: This study was the 5-year follow-up of a randomized clinical trial comparing a low-intensity control group (home-based assessments) with a high-intensity intervention group (assessments plus weekly sessions) in New Zealand. Participants were aged 5 to 16 years with BMI ≥ 98th centile or > 91st centile with weight-related comorbidities. The primary outcome was BMI standard deviation score (BMISDS). Secondary outcomes included various health markers. RESULTS: Of the 199 children included in the study at baseline (47% who identified as Māori, 53% who identified as female, 28% in the most deprived quintile, mean age = 10.7 years, mean BMISDS = 3.12), 86 completed a 5-year assessment (43%). BMISDS reduction at 12 months was not retained (control = 0.00 [95% CI: -0.22 to 0.21] and intervention = 0.17 [95% CI: -0.01 to 0.34]; p = 0.221) but was greater in participants aged <10 years versus >10 years at baseline (-0.15 [95% CI: -0.33 to 0.03] vs. 0.21 [95% CI: 0.03 to 0.40]; p = 0.008). BMISDS trajectory favored participants with high attendance (p = 0.013). There were persistent improvements in water intake and health-related quality of life in both groups as well as reduced sweet drink intake in the intervention group. CONCLUSIONS: This intervention, with high engagement from those most affected by obesity, did not achieve long-term efficacy of the primary outcome. Attendance and age remain important considerations for future interventions to achieve long-term BMISDS reduction.

Original publication




Journal article


Obesity (Silver Spring)

Publication Date