Fathers are critical stakeholders in childhood obesity prevention but are difficult to engage. This review presents a new approach to engaging fathers in obesity prevention during the first 1,000 days. The review focuses on five existing health and social service programs, including prenatal care, pediatric care, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, home visiting, and Early Head Start. For each program, the obesity prevention services provided, evidence of father engagement, and barriers thereto are outlined. Subsequently, policy, systems, and environmental strategies are outlined to address the noted barriers and promote father engagement. Although the programs hold great promise in bringing obesity prevention services to fathers, barriers to their engagement are present in the inner (e.g., limited hours of operation, lack of father‐specific materials and programming) and outer (e.g., lack of model programs, best practice models, and consistent funding) settings of programs. Policy, systems, and environmental strategies to increase father engagement focus on earmarked funding, changes to national practice guidelines and practitioner training requirements, and the establishment of father‐engagement performance metrics. Increasing father involvement in the specified programs will likely increase their engagement in early obesity prevention in an efficient and sustainable manner.
Engaging Fathers in Early Obesity Prevention During the First 1,000 Days: Policy, Systems, and Environmental Change Strategies
Breastfeeding protects against overweight and obesity, asthma, eczema, and type-II diabetes, and has long-term health benefits for women. The health benefits of breastfeeding are so valuable that in 1981, the World Health Organization established the International Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes (WHO Code) that prohibits marketing infant formula to … More
Effect of a Home-Visiting Intervention to Reduce Early Childhood Obesity Among Native American Children
The objective of this study was to assess the impact of a brief home-visiting approach, Family Spirit Nurture (FSN), on sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption, responsive parenting and infant feeding practices, and optimal growth through 12 months post partum. This study was a 1:1 randomized clinical trial comparing FSN with an … More
Serving Their Needs: A Qualitative Examination of Nutrition Policy Implementation in the Early Care and Education Setting
Identifying strategies to assist children in establishing healthy habits is essential to reduce the risk of childhood obesity. The Early Care and Education (ECE) setting is ideal for the implementation of obesity prevention practices. However, there are barriers present for implementing nutrition policies in this setting. This report explores the … More