Abstract P250: How to Successfully Manage Adolescents’ Metabolic Syndrome. Keep it Simple!
Background: The metabolic syndrome prevalence in adolescents is still rising (with up to 8% in some populations); this increase is mainly attributable to the obesity epidemic. Consequently, the long-term cardiovascular risk of these adolescents is very high. Unfortunately, despite this elevated risk, motivation and adherence to weight reduction programs still remain very low.
Hypothesis: To verify if the combination of motivational interviewing, nutritional and physical education, and a close follow-up in a multidisciplinary, family-based weight-reduction pediatric clinic is effective to initiate and sustain beneficial lifestyle changes at 6 months.
Subjects and Method: Fifty (50) families with adolescents (10-17 years old) characterized by obesity and metabolic syndrome were recruited with their families. The cardiometabolic risk profile (including body mass index, waist circumference, blood pressure, glucose, insulin, lipids and apolipoprotein B levels) of every subject was evaluated and explained to the adolescent and his/her parents. With motivational interviewing techniques and educative approaches, adolescents were brought to set up, at the first visit, a one month, one health challenge change. In subsequent visits, anthropometric measurements were recorded and, based on their first month’s success, new healthy challenges were proposed by the adolescent.
Results: Adolescents participating in this program were initially highly motivated to initiate a one month healthy challenge with an average score of 7/10. Eighty percent of them chose to stop drinking juice or soda beverages as their first challenge. At one month, over 80% of them observe a weight reduction or no weight gain. At this point, the adolescents’ perception of success is the main source of motivation to introduce new health challenges in their life. At 3 and 6 months, healthy habits are still present in over 70% of them. Interestingly, these changes are accompanied by modifications in anthropometric covariables. At 6 months, we observe a significant reduction of body mass index (p=0.027) and waist circumference (p=0.047) in addition to a trend towards a reduction of mean weight (p=0.054).
Conclusion: With counselling based on education, motivational techniques and a family approach, a high proportion of adolescents have initiated and maintained healthy changes. At 6 months, waist circumference reduction was the strongest change. This combined familial approach appears promising to reduce metabolic syndrome prevalence in adolescents. The prospective data collection is still ongoing, with the first adolescents recruited now reaching the one-year follow-up.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.