OBJECTIVE: To assess the effects of a family-centered, physical activity and nutrition "brief" intervention (time-limited contact) on body weight and related health outcomes in primary health care patients with an elevated 5-year cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk.
METHODS: This study implemented a cluster randomized controlled trial design with two treatment conditions: a CVD risk assessment and one-time consultation ("usual care" control) and a CVD risk assessment and up to five home sessions that aimed to reduce obesity by encouraging physical activity and healthy eating (intervention). Three hundred and twenty patients aged 35 to 65 years from 16 primary health care clinics in Auckland, New Zealand, participated in the study. Intervention effects on BMI, waist circumference, blood pressure, blood cholesterol, triglycerides, 5-year CVD risk, physical activity, and dietary patterns were assessed using generalized linear mixed models.
RESULTS: When compared with the control group, the intervention resulted in a significant but relatively modest decrease in BMI between baseline and the 12-month follow-up (-0.633 kg m(-2) , Padj = 0.048). Significant decreases were also observed for total cholesterol at 4 and 12 months, the total cholesterol to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ratio at 4 months, 5-year CVD risk at 4 months, and fast food consumption at 12 months.
CONCLUSIONS: Our findings show that a family-centered brief intervention targeting physical activity and nutrition can generate slightly better obesity-related health outcomes than usual care alone.