Examining how increases in earned income tax credits, food prices and neighborhood context affect children's BMI

The Foundation's program, Healthy Eating Research: Building Evidence to Prevent Childhood Obesity, was designed to support investigator-initiated research to identify and assess environmental and policy influences with the greatest potential to improve healthy eating and weight patterns among the nation's children.The goal of this project is to examine how increases in family income generated by changes in earned income tax credits (EITC) impact children's body mass index, and how this effect may be influenced by neighborhood food environments and regional food prices. The investigators will examine how income effects on childhood obesity levels vary based on regional food prices (fruits and vegetables and fast food) and local food environment (grocery stores and fast food outlets). Focusing on EITC-generated income changes circumvents past barriers to quasi-experimental research on family income effects. In addition, the analysis of the effects of employment and income from the EITC will provide insight into how the largest anti-poverty program in the U.S. shapes children's risk of obesity. Deliverables include a policy brief targeted to lawmakers as well as one peer-reviewed publication targeted to each of three research communities: economics, medical and public policy.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $45,000.00

Awarded on: 7/21/2011

Time frame: 9/1/2011 - 12/31/2011

Grant Number: 68704


Stanford University

450 Serra Mall
Stanford, 94305-2004


David H. Rehkopf
Project Director