Four-Stage Model Developed to Prevent Young Adult Weight Gain

(HealthDay News) — Application of a four-stage model facilitated development of a successful intervention to prevent excessive weight gain in young adults, according to research published online January 23 in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior.

Kendra K. Kattelmann, PhD, RDN, from South Dakota State University in Brookings, and colleagues developed a therapy-based, web-delivered intervention, Project Young Adults Eating and Active for Health (YEAH), to prevent excessive weight gain in young adults. Four phases of the PRECEDE model (social assessment; epidemiological, behavioral, and environmental assessment; educational and ecological assessment; and administrative and policy assessment and intervention alignment) were used to develop the intervention and supporting administrative portal. Using piloting results, the curriculum was refined and barriers to delivery were identified.

Project YEAH development was informed by qualitative and quantitative data collected at each phase. The researchers identified factors of highest priority to young adults in phase 1. Phase 2 elucidated environmental supports for healthful lifestyle challenges. Behavior and environmental changes that were considered important and changeable were identified in phase 3. A 10-week, theory-based, stage-tailored, interactive-learning intervention was developed in phase 4, which included a 10-month reinforcement period.

“Applying the PRECEDE model with fidelity during development of Project YEAH resulted in an intervention that pilot participants found relevant and useful, gained attention, instilled confidence in the ability to apply the information, and provided a sense of satisfaction,” the authors write.

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