Primary prevention of obesity in American Indian children.

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The primary purpose of this paper is to describe a school and community intervention project that includes inter-generational and other culturally appropriate activities designed to promote exercise and a healthful diet. Some preliminary results are presented comparing pre- and post test measures of knowledge, dietary habits, and exercise behavior for intervention and control schools. This paper also presents descriptive data on obesity of fifth grade Navajo and Pueblo children from rural schools. Of particular concern is the prevalence of obesity and the comparison of a sample of Navajo and Pueblo male and female students to determine whether any gender or tribe-related differences in the prevalence of obesity are apparent. The children's perceptions of their own weight are compared to their BMIs and are examined by gender and tribe.