“Primeros Pasos Parenting Newsletters: A Low-Intensity Approach to Prevent Obesity in Latino Children”
This Salud America! pilot research project is a low-cost parenting intervention to reduce rates of overweight and obesity in Latino children during the first three years of life. The intervention is built around a series of age-paced parenting newsletters called Primeros Pasos in Spanish or Building Blocks in English (PP/BB), which are mailed monthly to families beginning at the birth of a child through age 3. The front page of each newsletter features an activity for the parent to try out with the child, and other content address obesity prevention with explicit messages about parent-child feeding interactions, general guidance on nutrition including breastfeeding, supplemental feedings, parenting, safety and discipline. Parents also receive periodic developmental surveys with added parenting questions based on the PP/BB newsletter messages, and quarterly telephone follow-up calls by a program staffer. In a randomized controlled trial, the study compared rates of overweight and obesity among children who had either received the PP/BB intervention (225 children) or were in a control group (225 children).