Effect of a single nutritional intervention previous to a critical period of fat gain in university students with overweight and obesity: A randomized controlled trial
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Background: the present study aimed to investigate the effects of a single nutritional preventive session previous to a critical period linked to fat gain in university students with overweightness and obesity, emulating a nutritional session of a public health system. Methods: In this single-blind randomized controlled trial, 23 students met all the criteria to be included (20.91 ± 2.52-year-old; 52.2% women) who were divided into two groups: intervention group (IG) and control group (CG). Fat mass (FM) by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA), physical activity by accelerometry, feeding evaluation through three questionnaires, and a set of healthy lifestyle recommendations were evaluated before and after the national holidays (NH). Results: Our findings showed that FM increased significantly in the CG, but not in the IG (CG = 428.1g; IG = 321.9g; ∆ = 106.2g; p = 0.654 [95% CI = −379.57, 591.92]). However, no differences were found during the NH between them (Hedges’ g effect size = 0.19; p = 0.654). In addition, no statistical differences were observed between groups in feeding evaluations, the set of recommendations performed, and physical activity. Conclusion: a single preventive session before a critical period, using a similar counselling approach as used in the public health system, might not be enough to promote changes in eating and physical activity patterns and preventing fat gain in overweight/obese university students. Long-term interventions are a must. © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
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