Food and Health

Supporting Public Health Priorities: Recommendations for Physical Education and Physical Activity Promotion in Schools

Physical activity (PA) provides numerous physiological and psychosocial benefits. However, lifestyle changes, including reduced PA opportunities in multiple settings, have resulted in an escalation of overweight and obesity and related health problems. Poor physical and mental health, including metabolic and cardiovascular problems is seen in progressively younger ages, and the systematic decline in school PA has contributed to this trend. Of note, the crowded school curriculum with an intense focus on academic achievement, lack of school leadership support, funding and ...

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Effect of a Text Messaging Intervention on Influenza Vaccination in an Urban, Low-Income Pediatric and Adolescent Population

Influenza infection results in substantial costs, morbidity, and mortality. Vaccination against influenza is particularly important in children and adolescents who are a significant source of transmission to other high-risk populations, yet pediatric and adolescent vaccine coverage remains low. Traditional vaccine reminders have had a limited effect on low-income populations; however, text messaging is a novel, scalable approach to promote influenza vaccination.

Among children and adolescents in a low-income, urban population, a text messaging intervention compared with usual care was associated with ...

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Child and adolescent obesity: part of a bigger picture

The prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity has risen substantially worldwide in less than one generation. In the USA, the average weight of a child has risen by more than 5 kg within three decades, to a point where a third of the country’s children are overweight or obese. Some low-income and middle-income countries have reported similar or more rapid rises in child obesity, despite continuing high levels of undernutrition. Nutrition policies to tackle child obesity need to promote healthy ...

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Text4Health: Impact of Text Message Reminder–Recalls for Pediatric and Adolescent Immunizations

Objectives. We conducted 2 studies to determine the impact of text message immunization reminder–recalls in an urban, low-income population.

Methods. In 1 study, text message immunization reminders were sent to a random sample of parents (n = 195) whose children aged 11 to 18 years needed either or both meningococcal (MCV4) and tetanus–diphtheria–acellular pertussis (Tdap) immunizations. We compared receipt of MCV4 or Tdap at 4, 12, and 24 weeks with age- and gender-matched controls. In the other study, we compared attendance at a ...

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Explaining the Association between Early Adversity and Young Adults’ Diabetes Outcomes: Physiological, Psychological, and Behavioral Mechanisms

Previous studies have documented that early adversity increases young adults’ risk for diabetes resulting in morbidity and comorbidity with adverse health conditions. However, less is known about how inter-related physiological (e.g., body mass index [BMI]), psychological (e.g., depressive symptoms), and behavioral mechanisms (e.g., unhealthy eating and sedentary behavior) link early adversity to young adults’ diabetes outcomes, although these mechanisms appear to stem from early stressful experiences. The current study tested the patterning of these longitudinal pathways leading to young adults’ ...

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Obesity in the Early Childhood Years

On October 6, 2015, the Roundtable on Obesity Solutions of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine held a workshop titled “Obesity in the Early Childhood Years: State of the Science and Implementation of Promising Solutions.” The workshop examined what is currently known about the prevalence of obesity in young children, its trends over time, and its persistence into later childhood, adolescence, and adulthood; epigenetic factors related to risk of early childhood obesity; and the development of taste and ...

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New AAP Report Targets Lack of Adequate Food as Ongoing Health Risk to US Children

For the first time, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is recommending that pediatricians screen all children for food insecurity. In a new policy statement identifying the short and long-term adverse health impacts of food insecurity, the AAP also recommends that pediatricians become familiar with and refer families to needed community resources, and advocate for federal and local policies that support access to adequate, nutritious food.

The new policy statement, “Promoting Food Security for all Children​,” will be presented at ...

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2015′s Best and Worst States for Underprivileged Children

In an ideal world, children live carefree and have access to their basic needs: nutritious food, a good education, quality health care, adequate safety as well as the love and support of caring adults. When all of these needs are met, children have a strong chance of growing up to become productive members of society. But such fundamental rights are privileges for many children in the U.S. Despite its position as one of the world’s most powerful and prosperous countries, ...

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