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Review

Obesity Prevention within the Early Childhood Education and Care Setting: A Systematic Review of Dietary Behavior and Physical Activity Policies and Guidelines in High Income Countries

by 1,2,3,4,5, 1,2,3,4,5, 6, 6, 1,2,3,4,5, 1,2,3,4,5 and 1,2,3,4,5,6,*
1
Faculty of Health and Medicine, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia
2
Hunter Medical Research Institute (HMRI), New Lambton, NSW 2305, Australia
3
Priority Research Centre for Health Behavior, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia
4
National Centre of Implementation Science (NCOIS), School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia
5
Hunter New England Population Health, Hunter New England Local Health District, Wallsend, NSW 2305, Australia
6
School of Health Sciences, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, VIC 3122, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(2), 838; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020838
Received: 18 December 2020 / Revised: 14 January 2021 / Accepted: 18 January 2021 / Published: 19 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Collection Review Papers in Children's Health)
As a strategy for early childhood obesity prevention, a variety of dietary behavior and physical activity policies and guidelines published by leading health agencies and early childhood education and care (ECEC) licensing and accreditation bodies exist. Given the potential diversity in recommendations from these policies, this narrative review sought to synthesize, appraise and describe the various policies and guidelines made by organizational and professional bodies to highlight consistent recommendations and identify opportunities to strengthen such policies. An electronic bibliographic search of seven online databases and grey literature sources was undertaken. Records were included if they were policies or guidelines with specific recommendations addressing dietary behavior and/or physical activity practice implementation within the ECEC setting; included children aged >12 months and <6 years and were developed for high income countries. Recommended dietary behavior and physical activity policies and practices were synthesized into broad themes using the Analysis Grid for Environments Linked to Obesity framework, and the quality of included guidelines appraised. Our search identified 38 eligible publications mostly from the US and Australia. Identified guidelines were largely consistent in their recommendation and frequently addressed the physical and sociocultural environment and were well-aligned with research evidence. Broader consideration of policy and economic environments may be needed to increase the impact of such policies and guidelines within the ECEC setting. View Full-Text
Keywords: early childhood education and care; obesity prevention; policies and practices; dietary behavior; physical activity; systematic review; practice guidelines early childhood education and care; obesity prevention; policies and practices; dietary behavior; physical activity; systematic review; practice guidelines
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MDPI and ACS Style

Jackson, J.K.; Jones, J.; Nguyen, H.; Davies, I.; Lum, M.; Grady, A.; Yoong, S.L. Obesity Prevention within the Early Childhood Education and Care Setting: A Systematic Review of Dietary Behavior and Physical Activity Policies and Guidelines in High Income Countries. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 838. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020838

AMA Style

Jackson JK, Jones J, Nguyen H, Davies I, Lum M, Grady A, Yoong SL. Obesity Prevention within the Early Childhood Education and Care Setting: A Systematic Review of Dietary Behavior and Physical Activity Policies and Guidelines in High Income Countries. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(2):838. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020838

Chicago/Turabian Style

Jackson, Jacklyn K., Jannah Jones, Hanh Nguyen, Isabella Davies, Melanie Lum, Alice Grady, and Sze L. Yoong. 2021. "Obesity Prevention within the Early Childhood Education and Care Setting: A Systematic Review of Dietary Behavior and Physical Activity Policies and Guidelines in High Income Countries" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 2: 838. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020838

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