Using the Medical Research Council framework for the development and evaluation of complex interventions in a theory-based infant feeding intervention to prevent childhood obesity: The Baby Milk intervention and trial’
Journal of Obesity
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Lakshman, R., Griffin, S., Hardeman, W., Schiff, A., Kinmonth, A., & Ong, K. (2014). Using the Medical Research Council framework for the development and evaluation of complex interventions in a theory-based infant feeding intervention to prevent childhood obesity: The Baby Milk intervention and trial’. Journal of Obesity, 2014 https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/646504
Introduction - We describe our experience of using the Medical Research Council framework on complex interventions to guide the development and evaluation of an intervention to prevent obesity by modifying infant feeding behaviours. Methods - We reviewed the epidemiological evidence on early life risk factors for obesity and interventions to prevent obesity in this age group. The review suggested prevention of excess weight gain in bottle-fed babies and appropriate weaning as intervention targets, hence we undertook systematic reviews to further our understanding of these behaviours. We chose theory and behaviour change techniques that demonstrated evidence of effectiveness in altering dietary behaviours. We subsequently developed intervention materials and evaluation tools and conducted qualitative studies with mothers (intervention recipients) and healthcare professionals (intervention deliverers) to refine these. We developed a questionnaire to assess maternal attitudes and feeding practices to understand the mechanism of any intervention effects. Conclusions - In addition to informing development of our specific intervention and evaluation materials, use of the Medical Research Council framework has helped to build a generalisable evidence base for early life nutritional interventions. However, the process is resource intensive and prolonged, and this should be taken into account by public health research funders.
obesity prevention, infant nutrition, complex interventions
This work was supported by the Centre for Diet and Activity Research (CEDAR), a UKCRC Public Health Research Centre of Excellence. Funding from the British Heart Foundation, Economic and Social Research Council, Medical Research Council, the National Institute for Health Research, and the Wellcome Trust, under the auspices of the UK Clinical Research Collaboration, is gratefully acknowledged. The Baby Milk Trial is funded by the National Prevention Research Initiative (http://www.npri.org.uk Grant number MR/J000361/1). The Funding Partners relevant to this award are (in alphabetical order): Alzheimer's Research Trust; Alzheimer's Society; Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council; British Heart Foundation; Cancer Research UK; Chief Scientist Office, Scottish Government Health Directorate; Department of Health; Diabetes UK; Economic and Social Research Council; Health and Social Care Research and Development Division of the Public Health Agency (HSC R&D Division); Medical Research Council; The Stroke Association; Wellcome Trust; Welsh Assembly Government; and World Cancer Research Fund. RL was funded by a MRC Population Health Fellowship (Grant number G070165).
Wellcome Trust (087636/Z/08/Z)
Medical Research Council (MC_EX_MR/J000361/1)
Medical Research Council (MR/J000361/1)
Medical Research Council (MC_U106179474)
Medical Research Council (MC_U106179472)
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/646504
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/245489
Attribution 2.0 UK: England & Wales, Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0 UK
Licence URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/uk/