Methods: A randomized controlled trial was used to evaluate the efficacy of FUHW, compared to Community Practice, in increasing Hispanic youth's and parent’s moderate to vigorous physical activity and in improving Hispanic youth's and parent’s quality dietary intake over time. The study also examined the relative efficacy of FUHW for reducing youth’s and parent’s body mass index (BMI) and in increasing youth’s and parent’s perceptions of family functioning. Participants were 280 Hispanic youth (M age=13.01; SD=0.82; female=52.1%) and their parents (M age=41.88; SD=6.49; female=88.2%). At baseline, all youth were overweight or obese and 85.2% of parents were overweight or obese. This study reports on pre and post-condition effects.
Results: Relative to control, adolescents randomized to FUHW reported increases in family functioning from baseline to post-baseline and specifically on indicators of family communication (F(1, 233)=4.02, p<0.05, d=0.26) and parental involvement (F(1, 237)=5.45, p<0.05, d=0.30). Additionally, relative to control, parents randomized to FUHW had reductions in BMI (F(1, 177)=5.89, p<0.05, d=0.36). No condition effects were observed for youth BMI or parent and youth physical activity and diet quality.
Conclusions: The findings demonstrate that FUHW has promising short-term effects on family functioning and parent’s BMI. Longitudinal data have to be analyzed to determine whether these effects continue over time as well as to determine whether effects on behavioral outcomes (e.g., physical activity) emerge during the 12 and 24-month follow up assessments. Such delayed effects on behavioral outcomes are consistent in family-based prevention trials with other outcomes such as substance use.