Obesity prevention interventions in early childhood education and care settings with parental involvement: a systematic review

Heather Morris, Helen Skouteris, Susan Edwards, Leonie Rutherford

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Partnering early childhood education and care (ECEC) and the home together may be more effective in combating obesogenic risk factors in preschool children. Thus, an evaluation of ECEC obesity prevention interventions with a parental component was conducted, exploring parental engagement and its effect on obesity and healthy lifestyle outcomes. A search revealed 15 peer-reviewed papers. Some studies demonstrated positive weight changes, and secondary outcomes of changes in physical activity and healthy eating were reported in most studies; study quality ranged from fair to good. Four findings were linked to weight changes: (1) when educational material is consistent across settings; (2) capacity building of parents; (3) parents encouraging their children to drink water and (4) parental satisfaction and participation. A partnership between parents and ECEC may be a powerful force in the prevention of paediatric obesity. A better understanding of collaborative parental engagement is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1283-1313
Number of pages31
JournalEarly Child Development and Care
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • early childhood education and care
  • obesity prevention
  • parent engagement
  • preschool children

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