The 8th Biennial Childhood Obesity Conference will build on the experiences of the past seven conferences with presentations organized into eight tracks.
The Basic and Applied Research Track will present emerging research and best practices and strategies that promote and sustain healthy eating and physical activity to help reverse the childhood obesity epidemic, with a focus on populations at greatest risk.
The Built Environment, Land Use and Transportation Track will provide relevant, readily-applicable information on the relationship between childhood obesity and physical environments. Speakers will examine environmental change and policy efforts to support healthy eating and active living through the built environment. Sessions will address how community design impacts children's opportunities for daily physical activity and access to healthy food and beverage options. With an emphasis on lower socioeconomic communities, speakers will identify promising strategies and action steps to strengthen and accelerate efforts to create more healthy community environments where children live, play, and learn.
The Community Nutrition and Physical Activity Track will provide current, in-depth information on a broad range of activities designed to increase access to healthy food and physical activity opportunities in communities. Sessions will explore progress in communities focused on environmental, policy, and organizational practice strategies in low-income, culturally diverse urban and rural areas. Speakers will share success stories of resident-based, multi-sector partnerships at local and statewide levels; describe community-wide advocacy and engagement models; and provide examples of evidenced-based, replicable strategies.
The Early Childhood Education Track will showcase the collective impact early childhood providers and specialists, community-based organizations, clinicians, public health practitioners, schools, and families have on the health of young children when we pursue a shared vision for success during this foundational stage of human development. The track features examples of how cross-sector coordination impacts policy, systems, environmental changes, practices, and nutrition education and physical activity interventions and resources. Interactive sessions will highlight evidence and practice-based strategies designed to promote optimal health for our nation’s culturally diverse children and will include preconception care, breastfeeding, nutrition and physical activity education, infant and child care environments, and parental and community engagement approaches.
The Food Systems Track explores local and global agricultural production, processing, distribution, retailing, food service, consumption and waste. Together these components impact human nutrition and health, food security, the economy, and the environment both today and for future generations. Pushing the boundaries of conventional thinking, sessions will showcase multi-sectoral food system projects, policies and research that contribute to the prevention and reduction of childhood obesity and, ultimately, improve human health.
The Healthcare Approaches to Prevention Track will offer the latest clinical information on prevention and treatment guidelines for childhood obesity as well as emerging trends in the health care field, both inside the clinic walls and as partners in community prevention. Sessions will focus on the changing health care environment related to implementation of the Affordable Care Act and new opportunities to further develop and strengthen community health efforts that aim to prevent childhood obesity and its associated co-morbidities. The sessions will also address the diverse range of health care providers necessary to effectively provide access to care, treatment and health promotion/education for children and their families. Health equity issues will be prioritized as key factors in effective health care strategies, which include how to minimize disparities among racially and ethnically diverse low-income children. Speakers will present research, tools and resources for meeting individual health care needs related to childhood obesity and examine best practices for community health.
The Marketing to Kids Track will disclose marketing tactics used by the food and beverage industry to build brand preferences and promote unhealthy products to children and youth. Sessions will detail the prevalence of such marketing, its effects on children’s health, and the targeted marketing aimed at our youngest, most vulnerable populations. Presenters will share promising strategies and emerging policy opportunities at the national, state and local levels to address unhealthy food and beverage marketing and engage youth, parents and other key stakeholders in this important topic.
The School and Expanded Learning (After School and Summer) Track will highlight effective strategies that demonstrate how collective impact has improved the nutrition and physical activity environments for school-age children in diverse educational settings. This track will emphasize the implementation of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, specifically, implementation of the School Breakfast and Lunch Meal Requirements, Local School Wellness Policy, Professional Standards, and At Risk Supper; innovative approaches to addressing obesity prevention in expanded learning environments; Connecting Common Core educational standards to nutrition/physical/health education; increasing physical activity opportunities before, during , and after school; and positively impacting student health and performance by focusing on the well-being of teachers and other staff.
*Thematic principles of collective impact will be interwoven throughout each track with a particular focus on how cross-sector collaborations and alliances coupled with evidence and practice based strategies can assist with reaching children and adolescents disproportionality affected by obesity/overweight.