Interventions to Prevent Obesity in Mexican Children and Adolescents: Systematic Review

Magaly Aceves-Martins*, Lizet López-Cruz, Marcela García-Botello, Yareni Yunuen Gutierrez-Gómez, Carlos Francisco Moreno-García

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The prevalence of overweight and obesity has been rising among Mexican children and adolescents in the last decades. To systematically review obesity prevention interventions delivered to Mexican children and adolescents. Thirteen databases and one search engine were searched for evidence from 1995 to 2021. Searches were done in English and Spanish to capture relevant information. Studies with experimental designs, delivered in any setting (e.g., schools or clinics) or digital domains (e.g., social media campaigns) targeting Mexican children or adolescents (≤ 18 years) and reporting weight outcomes, were included in this review. In addition, the risk of bias was appraised with the Effective Public Health Practice Project Quality Assessment Tool. Twenty-nine studies with 19,136 participants (3–17 years old) were included. The prevalence of overweight and obesity at baseline ranged from 21 to 69%. Most of the studies (89.6%) were delivered in school settings. The duration ranged from 2 days to 3 school years, and the number of sessions also varied from 2 to 200 sessions at different intensities. Overall, anthropometric changes varied across studies. Thus, the efficacy of the included studies is heterogeneous and inconclusive among studies. Current evidence is heterogeneous and inconclusive about the efficacy of interventions to prevent obesity in Mexican children and adolescents. Interventions should not be limited to educational activities and should include different components, such as multi-settings delivery, family inclusion, and longer-term implementations. Mixed-method evaluations (including robust quantitative and qualitative approaches) could provide a deeper understanding of the effectiveness and best practices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)563-586
Number of pages24
JournalPrevention Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - May 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Concerning the studies’ funding, nine (31.0%) did not report any funding, and only one (Arroyo et al., ) reported not receiving any funding for the study. Three studies (10.3%, Gatica-Dominguez et al., ; Perichart-Perera et al., ; Polo-Oteyza et al., ) reported receiving funding from the food industry, three more (10.3%; Costa-Urrutia et al., ; Ramirez-Lopez et al., ; Levy et al., , ) reported using funds from local authorities. Five studies (17.2%; Mejia et al., ; Padilla‐Raygoza et al., ; Rodriguez-Ventura et al., ; Salazar-Vazquez et al., ; Zacarias et al., ) reported using public national funding, and five more (Alvirde-Garcia et al., ; Bacardi-Gascon & Jiménez-Cruz ; Benitez-Guerrero et al.,; Martinez-Andrade et al., ; Vilchis-Gil et al., ) received funding from public institutions (e.g., public hospitals or public universities). One study (Safdie et al., , ) reported being supported by local, national, and international organisations. Two (6.8%; Elizondo-Montemayor et al., ; Saucedo-Molina et al., ) reported receiving funding from private institutions (e.g. private universities, insurance companies’ funds). The authors’ conflict of interest was not reported in 18 studies (62.0%) (Table ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Interventions to Prevent Obesity in Mexican Children and Adolescents: Systematic Review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this