ENRICH (Encouraging Nurturing Responsiveness to Improve Child Health)

Banner image for ENRICH (Encouraging Nurturing Responsiveness to Improve Child Health)

ENRICH stands for Encouraging Nurturing Responsiveness to Improve Child Health. This research project works to help parents establish healthy eating, activity, bedtime, and screen time routines.

Families will be randomly assigned to Program 1 or Program 2. PROGRAM 1: Families will participate in 10 weekly home visits with a trained UTHealth coach to support young children’s healthy eating, activity, & sleep habits. PROGRAM 2: Families will receive information in the mail and calls from a trained UTHealth staff to support young children’s learning and development.

We will measure each child’s height, weight, diet, physical activity, screen time, and sleep time routines.

All families will receive gift cards, toys, and information on to help parents support their young children’s language and development. Families in Program 1 will also receive tools to help support their young children’s eating, physical activity, and sleep habits – all at no cost to families.

Background Information

In Texas, even the youngest children are affected by the obesity epidemic with 32% of 2 to 5 year old children overweight or obese before they enter school. The home environment and parenting skills and practices during the very early years of a child’s life are critically important to establish obesity prevention behaviors such as healthy eating, physical activity, and adequate duration of sleep. However, parents often lack these skills, and interventions targeting the child’s home environment, are sparse.

Objectives

The overall aim of this study is to pilot test an integrated, culturally sensitive home-based program targeting predominantly low-income, African American and Hispanic parents to improve parenting skills for obesity prevention and control among 2-3 year old toddlers.

Study Design

This is a pilot study using a randomized control design after development of the intervention. The intervention will integrate the Play and Learning Strategies (PALS) program, a home-based parent- centered curriculum designed to facilitate parents’ mastery of skills for interacting with their toddler with Coordinated Approach To Child Health (CATCH), a behaviorally-based school health promotion program based on Social Cognitive Theory (SCT) to increase opportunities for healthy eating and activity.

We will integrate and pilot test PALS-CATCH, a 10-week home-based obesity prevention and control intervention targeting parents of toddlers 2-3y who are overweight/obese. The study will be implemented in three phases. Phase 1 (months 1-7) will include an integration of the PALS Toddler curriculum with CATCH EC messages and behavioral strategies. Phase 2 (months 8-18) will consist of a pilot-test of PALS-CATCH using a RCT design; and Phase 3 (months 19-24) will consist of coding and analyzing data, report writing, and preparing for a R01 application.

Principal Investigators: Susan Landry, PhD; Shreela Sharma, PhD

Co-Investigators: Ursula Johnson, PhD; Courtney Byrd-Williams, PhD; Deanna Hoelscher PhD 

Photo of Courtney Byrd-Williams

Courtney Byrd-Williams, PhD

Principal Investigator, Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite; Director, Maternal and Child Health Training Program Photo of Ru-Jye (Lindi) Chuang

Ru-Jye (Lindi) Chuang, DrPH, MS

Photo of Deanna Hoelscher

Deanna Hoelscher, PhD, RDN, LD, CNS, FISBNPA

Co-Principal Investigator, Texas SNAP-Ed Evaluation Photo of Shreela V. Sharma

Shreela V. Sharma, PhD, RD, LD