University Given Grant To Study Obesity After High School

The Oregonian


Thanks to a $4.7 million federal grant, Oregon State University researchers are about to delve into a trouble spot in the battle against obesity: the transition years when teens grow into young adults and often pack on the pounds.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture awarded the grant for an OSU-designed intervention program that will test which of three life-skills tracks work best to keep young people healthy as they move past high school.

Starting in June, about 500 teens, aged 15 to 19, involved in 4-H soccer programs in Marion, Polk and Yamhill counties will be assigned to one of the three tracks:

** Classes on growing food, healthy cooking, preparing inexpensive meals at home and staying active after high-school sports years end.

** Two programs will use technology to create virtual environments in which teens practice those same skills. One will be based on real life, while the other will be a fantasy world in which anything is possible.

Melinda Manore, a professor of nutrition, and Siew Sun Wong, assistant professor of nutrition, and their colleagues will evaluate whether students have better outcomes — whether they stay physically active and develop healthy lifestyle skills — with the real-world program, the virtual real world or the virtual fantasy world program, given how enamored young people are of technology and video games.

Leave a Reply