Obesity Prevention in Early Child Care Settings: A Bistate (Minnesota and Wisconsin) Assessment of Best Practices, Implementation Difficulty, and Barriers

Marilyn S. Nanney, Tara L. LaRowe, Cynthia Davey, Natasha Frost, Chrisa Arcan, Joyce O’Meara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background. Long-term evaluation studies reveal that high-quality early care and education (ECE) programs that include a lifestyle component predict later adult health outcomes. The purpose of this article is to characterize the nutrition and physical activity (PA) practices, including implementation difficulty and barriers, of licensed center- and family home-based ECE programs serving 2- to 5-year-old children in Minnesota (MN) and Wisconsin (WI). Method. A stratified random sampling procedure was used to select representative cross sections of licensed ECE providers in MN and WI. A total of 2,000 providers (1,000 center-based, 1,000 family home-based) were randomly selected and invited to respond to a 97-item survey with questions representing (1) nutrition and PA practices, (2) barriers to meeting nutrition and PA best practices, and (3) written and implemented nutrition and PA policies. Summated scales were constructed for nutrition-related (range 0-15; Cronbach’s α =.86) and for PA-related best practices (range 0-10; Cronbach’s α =.82). Results. A total of 823 providers returned surveys between August 2010 and March 2011, resulting in a 44% bistate participation rate. Across all programs an average (SD) of 7.0 (4.1) nutrition best practices were already implemented. Center-based providers reported on average 0.8 additional nutrition best practice (7.4 vs. 6.6, p =.01). Across all programs an average (SD) of 5.2 (3.1) PA best practices were already implemented. Center-based providers reported on average one more PA best practice (5.3 vs. 4.3, p <.01). The cost of healthy food and the weather were identified as barriers by 80% of providers, regardless of program type.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23-31
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Education and Behavior
Volume44
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017

Keywords

  • center
  • child care
  • early care settings
  • family home
  • obesity prevention
  • preschool

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Obesity Prevention in Early Child Care Settings: A Bistate (Minnesota and Wisconsin) Assessment of Best Practices, Implementation Difficulty, and Barriers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this