Multi-component school-based obesity prevention programs

Program basics

  • Involves educational, environmental, and behavioral activities and typically addresses both physical activity and nutrition before, during, and/or after school
  • Typically includes healthy living and nutrition education classes, enhanced physical education and increased physical activity opportunities, and school-wide promotion of healthy food options and food environment improvements
  • Capacity building and professional support for teachers and staff, along with family education and support

Strength of evidence

Evidence level: Proven (highest tier)

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Proven (highest tier)

Ranked as having the highest level of evidence by County Health Rankings and Roadmaps


Target population

All school-aged children

Program cost

Not available

Implementation locations

  • Nationwide

Dates active

Not available

Outcomes and impact

  • Increased physical activity and improved dietary habits
  • Improved weight status when implemented with high intensity for long durations
  • More successful than single-component programs

Keys to successful implementation

  • Note: This content is under review
  • Fostering community and parent participation is critical to maintaining the multifaceted nature of such programs.
  • Trained staff members and teachers who model good health habits for their students are an important component of these programs.
  • Partnerships with childhood health and obesity non-profits, child nutritionists, community gardens, and farmers markets can increase longer term engagement.
  • Ensuring that program staff model good health habits strengthens program learnings.

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