22 Apr 2011

University of Hawaii given funding for obesity prevention studies

2:04 pm on 22 April 2011

The University of Hawaii has been granted 25 million US dollars to develop obesity prevention strategies among native populations and the Pacific territories.

The US Department of Agriculture, which is donating the money, says it is part of a continuing commitment to meet the rising challenge of obesity, especially in youth, from the US mainland, Hawaii, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and Alaska.

The team leader of the project, Rachel Novotny, says the five-year research project will involve school students modifying their diets, while researchers record their measurements and changes over time.

"Our goal is to shift food environment and the physical activity environment so that children are more active and that they consume more of the healthy choices."

Rachel Novotny says the project will also involve a training component where researchers will develop methods to help children maintain a healthy weight and prevent obesity.