Examining environmental influences on child dietary and physical activity behaviors

Environmental factors may account for much of the increase in children's overweight. This research project will analyze the largest database on children's eating and physical activity environments in the United States: the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) of 2005. RWJF funded data collection for CHIS 2005; however, available resources did not permit funding for data analysis. This grant will support analysis of CHIS 2005 to identify the modifiable policy and environmental forces that promote a healthy weight in childhood. First conducted in 2000 and again in 2003 and 2005, CHIS reflects the diversity of the California population, providing accurate cross-sectional estimates of a wide variety of health status variables, down to the county level and, in 2005, the school district level. The researchers will examine the relationship of environmental factors, including the food and activity environments at home and at school, with children's and adolescents' dietary and physical activity behaviors through statistical analysis. The researchers will also examine the associations of local California policies and programs with changes in the behavior of the localities' children. The project is important to the Foundation's Childhood Obesity prevention strategy because it can identify the school and community-level environmental variables that are most strongly related to healthy eating and physical activity. Because of the size of the sample, good analysis is possible especially for those children most at risk of obesity -- those of low-income, racial/ethnic subgroups, and those living in built environments not conducive to a healthy lifestyle. Project deliverables include published findings, up to three policy briefs, and a research conference on environmental factors influencing dietary and physical activity behaviors.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $394,182.00

Awarded on: 11/29/2006

Time frame: 12/1/2006 - 11/30/2009

Grant Number: 58107


University of California, Los Angeles, Center for Health Policy Research

10960 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 1550
Los Angeles, 90024-3801


Susan H. Babey
Project Director