Background: Childhood obesity imposes a great burden on the healthcare system. Given the
increased frequency of dental compared to medical visits during childhood, dentists may be in
an ideal position to recognize patients at risk of developing obesity. This randomized
clinical trial explored the efficacy of a brief nutrition and physical activity counseling
for healthy weight 6 to11 year-old children in a university-based pediatric dental clinic.
Methods: 168 children, 6-11 year old, were allocated to test and control groups and their
Body Mass index (BMI) were recorded. Their parents/caregivers completed a questionnaire
regarding their child's nutrition, physical activity and screen time. The parents/caregivers
of the test group then received a brief counseling session that encouraged an increase in
children's physical activity, and a decrease in sugar-sweetened beverages and screen time.
Data, collected at baseline and follow-up session (within 6-12 months) were analyzed using
general linear regression, adjusting for age, gender, socio-demographic characteristics,
education, labour force, income and awareness of school nutrition policy (P≤ 0.05).