Obesity iconSchool Health

We develop, implement, and evaluate school-based health programs which provide children with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to achieve healthy and productive lives.

Exploring physical activity engagement in secondary school students in Montevideo, Uruguay: A qualitative study

(Parobii, I, Springer, AE, Harrell, MB, Gomensoro, LM, Fresco, MT, Alers, N, Perry, CL, & Estol, D; Int J Child Adolesc health; 2018)


School socioeconomic disparities in e-cigarette susceptibility and use among central Texas middle school students

(Springer AE, Davis C, Van Dusen D, Grayless M, Case KR, Craft M, Kelder SH; Preventive Medicine Reports; 2018)


Structuring Process Evaluation to Forecast Use and Sustainability of an Intervention Theory and Data From the Efficacy Trial for Lunch Is in the Bag

(Roberts-Gray C, Sweitzer SJ, Ranjit N, Potratz C, Rood M, Romo-Palafox MJ, Byrd-Williams CE, Briley ME, Hoelscher DM; Health Educ Behav.; 2017)


Adequacy of Parent-Packed Lunches and Preschooler's Consumption Compared to Dietary Reference Intake Recommendations

(Romo-Palafox MJ, Ranjit N, Sweitzer SJ, Roberts-Gray C, Byrd-Williams CE, Briley ME, Hoelscher DM; J Am Coll Nutr; 2017)


Impact of school-based vegetable garden and physical activity coordinated health interventions on weight status and weight-related behaviors of ethnically diverse, low-income students: Study design and baseline data of the Texas, Grow! Eat! Go!...

(Evans A, Ranjit N, Hoelscher D, Jovanovic C, Lopez M, McIntosh A, Ory M, Whittlesey L, McKyer L, Kirk A, Smith C, Walton C, Heredia N, Warren J; BMC Public Health; 2016)


Previous gardening experience and gardening enjoyment is related to vegetable preferences and consumption among low-income elementary school children

(Evans A, Ranjit N, Fair CN, Jennings R, Warren JL; J Nutr Educ Behav; 2016)


Efficacy of the Lunch is in the Bag intervention to increase parents' packing of healthy sack lunches for young children: a cluster-randomized trial in early care and education centers

(Roberts-Gray C, Briley M, Ranjit N, Byrd-Williams C, Sweitzer SJ, Sharma SV, Romo-Palafox M, Hoelscher DM; International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity; 2016)


A Contextual Look at Safe Routes to School Implementation in Texas

(Atteberry H, Dowdy D, Oluyomi A, Nichols D, Ory MG, & Hoelscher DM; Environment & Behavior; 2016)


Effects of Funding Allocation for Safe Routes to School Programs on Active Commuting to School and Related Behavioral, Knowledge, and Psychosocial Outcomes: Results From the Texas Childhood Obesity Prevention Policy Evaluation (T-COPPE) Study

(Hoelscher DM, Ory MG, Dowdy D, Miao J, Atteberry H, Nichols D, Evans A, Menendez T, Lee C, & Wang S; Environment & Behavior; 2016)


Using Family-Focused Garden, Nutrition, and Physical Activity Programs To Reduce Childhood Obesity: The Texas! Go! Eat! Grow! Pilot Study

(Spears-Lanoix EC, McKyer EL, Evans A, McIntosh WA, Ory M, Whittlesey L, Kirk A, Hoelscher DM, Warren JL; Childhood Obesity, 2015)


Effectiveness of the Lunch is in the Bag program on communication between the parent, child and childcare provider around fruits, vegetables and whole grain foods: A group-randomized controlled trial

(Sharma SV, Rashid T, Ranjit N, Byrd-Williams C, Chuang RJ, Roberts-Gray C, Briley M, Sweitzer S, Hoelscher DM; Preventive Medicine; 2015)


Dietary quality of preschooler's sack lunches as measured by the Healthy Eating Index

Romo-Palafox MJ, Ranjit N, Sweitzer SJ, Roberts-Gray C, Hoelscher DM, Byrd-Williams CE, Briley ME; Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; 2015)


Bullied Status and Physical Activity in Texas Adolescents

(Case KR, Pérez A, Saxton DL, Hoelscher DM, Springer AE; Health Educ Behav; 2015)


Feasibility and Acceptability of Brighter Bites - A food co-op in schools to increase access, continuity and education of fruits and vegetables among low-income populations

(Sharma S, Helfman L, Albus K, Pomeroy M, Chuang RJ, Markham C; Journal of Primary Prevention; 2015)


Development of a method to observe preschoolers' packed lunches in early care and education centers

(Sweitzer SJ, Byrd-Williams CE, Ranjit N, Romo-Palafox MJ, Briley ME, Roberts-Gray CR, Hoelscher DM; Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Nutrition and Dietetics; 2015)


Effects of the Quest to Lava Mountain computer game on dietary and physical activity behaviors of elementary school children - a pilot group-randomized controlled trial

(Sharma SV, Shegog R, Chow J, Finley C, Pomeroy M, Smith C, Hoelscher DM; Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; 2015)


The Science of Childhood Obesity: An Individual to Societal Framework

UTHealth researchers published eight new articles, including an introduction from the regional dean, as part of a special obesity issue of the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. The issue provides insights into how to solve the child obesity epidemic and close the gap in our current understanding of its causes.


The association between state bans on soda only and adolescent substitution with other sugar-sweetened beverages: A cross-sectional study

(Taber DR, Chriqui JF, Vuillaume R, Kelder SH, Chaloupka FJ; The International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity; 2015)


The science of childhood obesity: an individual to societal framework

Researchers from the MSD Center published the eight articles in this special issue from the International Journal of Behavioral Science and Physical Activity. The supplement provides insights into how to solve the child obesity epidemic and close the gap in our current understanding of its causes.


School-level economic disadvantage and obesity in middle school children in central Texas, USA: A cross-sectional study

(Springer AE, Li L, Ranjit N, Delk J, Mehta K, Kelder SH; International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity; 2015)


Educational outcomes associated with childhood obesity in the United States: Cross-sectional results from the 2011-2012 National Survey of Children's Health

(Carey FR, Singh GK, Brown HS 3rd, Wilkinson AV; Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity; 2015)


School-level economic disadvantage and obesity in middle school children in central Texas, USA: a cross-sectional study

(Springer AE, Li L, Ranjit N, Delk J, Mehta K, Kelder SH; 2015)


School social cohesion, student-school connectedness, and bullying in Colombian adolescents

(Springer AE, Cuevas Jaramillo MC, Ortiz Gómez Y, Case K, Wilkinson A; Global Health Promotion; 2015)


How local and state regulations affect the child care food environment: A qualitative study of child care center directors' perspectives

Byrd-Williams CE, Camp EJ, Mullen PD, Briley ME, Hoelscher DM; Infant, Child & Adolescent Nutrition; 2015)


Implementation of strategies to increase adolescents' access to fruit and vegetables at school: Process evaluation findings from the Boost study

(Aarestrup AK, Jorgensen TS, Hoelscher DM, Due P, Krolner R; BMC Public Health; 2015)


Incorporating primary and secondary prevention approaches to address childhood obesity prevention and treatment in a low-income, ethnically diverse population: Study design and demographic data from the Texas TX CORD Study

(Hoelscher DM, Butte NF, Barlow S, Vandewater EA, Sharma SV, Huang T, Finkelstein E, Pont S, Sacher P, Byrd-Williams C, Oluyomi AO, Durand C, Li L, Kelder SH; Childhood Obesity; 2015)


Racial and Ethnic Differences in the Home Food Environment Explain Disparities in Dietary Practices of Middle School Children in Texas

(Ranjit N, Evans AE, Springer AE, Hoelscher DM, Kelder SH; 2015)


Promoting teacher adoption of physical activity breaks in the classroom: Findings of the Central Texas CATCH Middle School Project

(Delk J, Springer, AE, Kelder, SH, Conklin, M; Journal of School Health, 2014)


Feasibility and Acceptability of a Gardening-based Nutrition Education Program in Preschoolers from Low-income, Minority Populations

(Sharma SV, Hedberg AM, Skala K, Chuang RJ, Lewis TM; Journal of Early Childhood Research; 2014)


How state taxes and policies targeting soda consumption modify the association between school vending machines and student dietary behaviors: a cross-sectional analysis

(Taber DR, Chiriqui JF, Vuillaume R, Chaloupka FJ; PLOS ONE; 2014)


Promoting Teacher Adoption of Physical Activity Breaks in the Classroom: Findings of the Central Texas CATCH Middle School Project

(Delk J, Springer AE, Kelder SH, Grayless M; 2014)


Parental safety concerns and active school commute: correlates across multiple domains in the home-to-school journey

(Oluyomi AO, Lee C, Nehme E, Dowdy D, Ory MG, Hoelscher DM; Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act; 2014)


T-COPPE School Environment Audit Tool: Assessing safety and walkability of school environments

(Lee CD, Ory MG, HyungJin, Dowdy D, Hoelscher DM; Journal of Physical Activity and Health; 2013)


Association between district and state policies and US public elementary school competitive food and beverage environments

(Chriqui JF, Turner L, Taber DR, Chaloupka FJ; JAMA Pediatrics; 2013)


Identifying state-level policy and provision domains for physical education and physical activity in high school

(Hales DH, Stevens JS Murray DM, Taber DR, Roberts A; International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity; 2013)


Is frequency of family meals associated with parental encouragement of healthy eating among ethnically diverse eighth graders?

(Poulos NS, Pasch KE, Springer AE, Hoelscher DM, Kelder SH; 2013)


Promoting Energy-Balance Behaviors Among Ethnically Diverse Adolescents: Overview and Baseline Findings of the Central Texas CATCH Middle School Project

(Springer AE, Kelder SH, Byrd-Williams CE, Pasch KE, Ranjit N, Delk JE, Hoelscher DM; 2013)


Promoting physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption through a community-school partnership: The effects of Marathon Kids on low-income elementary school children in Texas

(Springer AE, Kelder SH, Ranjit N, Hochberg-Garrett H, Chow S, Delk J ; Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 2012)


The role of schools in food and beverage marketing: Significance, challenges, next steps

(Latimer LA, Delk J, Springer AE, Pasch KE; 2012)


Environmental characteristics and student physical activity in PE class: findings from two large urban areas of Texas

(Skala KA, Springer AE, Sharma SV, Hoelscher DM, Kelder SH; J Phys Act Health; 2012)


Unbundling outcomes of a multilevel intervention to increase fruit, vegetables, and whole grains parents pack for their preschool children in sack lunches

(Briley ME, Ranjit N, Hoelscher DM, Sweitzer SJ, Almansour FD, Roberts-Gray CR ;American Journal of Health Education, 2012)


The effects of acculturation on healthy lifestyle characteristics among Hispanic 4th grade children in Texas public schools, 2004-2005

(Lind C, Mirchandani GG, Castrucci BC, Chavez N, Handler A, Hoelscher DM; J Sch Health; 2012)


The effects of acculturation on healthy lifestyle characteristics among Hispanic 4th grade children in Texas public schools, 2004-2005

(Lind C, Mirchandani GG, Castrucci BC, Chavez N, Handler A, Hoelscher DM ; Journal of School Health , 2012)


Association between depressed mood and perceived weight in middle and high school age students: Texas 2004-2005

(Schiefelbein EL, Mirchandani GG, George GC, Becker EA, Castrucci BC, Hoelscher DM; Matern Child Health; 2012)


Associations of physical fitness and academic performance among schoolchildren. Journal of School Health

(Van Dusen DP, Kelder SH, Kohl, HW, Ranjit N, Perry CL; Journal of School Health, 2011)


Do trends in physical activity, sedentary, and dietary behaviors support trends in obesity prevalence in 2 border regions in Texas?

(Ezendam NP, Springer AE, Brug J, Oenema A, Hoelscher DH; J Nutr Educ Behav; 2011)


Physical activity, watching television, and the risk of obesity in students, Texas, 2004-2005

(Pérez A, Hoelscher DM, Springer AE, Brown HS, Barroso CS, Kelder SH, Castrucci BC; Prev Chronic Dis; 2011)


How to help parents pack better preschool sack lunches: Advice from parents for educators

(Sweitzer SJ, Briley ME, Roberts-Grey C, Hoelscher DM, Staskel DM, Almansour FD; Journal of Nutrition Behavior and Education, 2011)


Pilot testing CATCH Early Childhood: A preschool-based program aimed at promoting healthy nutrition and physical activity among 3 to 5 year old children enrolled in Head Start

(Sharma SV, Chuang RJ, Hedberg AM; Journal of School Health, 2011)


Physical activity participation by parental language use in 4th, 8th, and 11th grade students in Texas, USA

(Springer AE, Lewis K, Kelder SH, Fernandez ME, Barroso CS, Hoelscher DM; J Immigr Minor Health; 2010)


Dietary and activity correlates of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption among adolescents

(Ranjit N, Evans MH, Byrd-Williams C, Evans AE, Hoelscher DM; Pediatrics; 2010)


Parental influences on television watching among children living on the Texas-Mexico border

(Springer AE, Kelder SH, Barroso CS, Drenner KL, Shegog R, Ranjit N, Hoelscher DM; Prev Med; 2010)


A descriptive study of beverage consumption among an ethnically diverse sample of public school students in Texas

(Evans AE, Springer AE, Evans MH, Ranjit N, Hoelscher DM; J Am Coll Nutr; 2010)


Observable weight distributions and children's individual weight assessment

(Brown HS III, Evans AE, Mirchandani GG, Kelder SH, Hoelscher DM; Obesity; 2010)


Prevalence of self-reported activity and sedentary behaviors among 4th-, 8th-, and 11th-grade Texas public school children: the school physical activity and nutrition study

(Hoelscher DM, Barroso C, Springer A, Castrucci B, Kelder SH; J Phys Act Health; 2009)


Television viewing and snacking behaviors of fourth- and eight-grade schoolchildren in Texas

(Vader AM, Walters ST, Harris TR, Hoelscher DM; Prev Chronic Dis; 2009)


Prevalence of Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviors by Metropolitan Status in 4th-, 8th-, and 11th-Grade Students in Texas, 2004-2005

(Springer AE, Hoelscher DM, Kelder SH, Castrucci B, Pérez A; Prev Chronic Dis; 2009)


Validating the food behavior questions from the elementary school SPAN questionnaire

(Thiagarajah K, Fly AD, Hoelscher DM, Bai Y, Lo K, Leone A, Shertzer JA; J Nutr Educ Behav; 2008)


Crime rates and sedentary behavior among 4th grade Texas school children

(Brown HS, Pérez A, Mirchandani GG, Hoelscher DM, Kelder SH; Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act; 2008)


Reproducibility of the school-based nutrition monitoring questionnaire among fourth-grade students in Texas

(Penkilo M, George GC, Hoelscher DM; J Nutr Educ Behav; 2008)


Differences in food consumption and meal patterns in Texas school children by grade

(Pérez A, Hoelscher DM, Brown HS, Kelder SH; Prev Chronic Dis; 2007)


Measuring the Prevalence of Overweight in Texas Schoolchildren

(Hoelscher DM, Day RS, Lee ES, Frankowski RF, Kelder SH, Ward JL, Scheurer ME; Am J Public Health; 2004)


Reproducibility and validity of the secondary level School-Based Nutrition Monitoring student questionnaire

(Hoelscher DM, Day RS, Kelder SH, Ward JL; J Am Diet Assoc; 2003)


¿Que Puedo Empacar En El Almuerzo De Mi Hijo?

2/12/18 - Mezcla y combina los grupos de alimentos de MiPlato. Imaginar en grupos de alimentos ayuda a asegurar que su hijo(a) reciba los nutrientes que e?l o ella necesita.


What Can I Pack In My Child's Lunch?

2/12/18 - Mix & match from MyPlate Food Groups. Thinking about lunched in food groups helps ensure your child gets the nutrients he or she needs.


Parent packs, child eats: Surprising results of Lunch is in the Bag‘s efficacy trial

(Roberts-Gray C, Ranjit N, Sweitzer SJ, Byrd-Williams CE, Romo-Palafox MJ, Briley ME, Hoelscher DM; Appetite; 2018)


GO Austin! / ¡VAMOS! Austin (GAVA) Evaluation of a community based initiative

2/18/16 - This infographic describes some of the initial findings from the GAVA evaluation.


Food at School Parties

9/15/15 - What one YEAR of school party food really looks like.


Comida en las Fiestas Escolares

9/15/2015 - La realidad de las fiestas escolares en un año.


The Science of Childhood Obesity: An Individual to Societal Framework

7/27/15 - UTHealth researchers published eight new articles, including an introduction from the regional dean, as part of a special obesity issue of the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. The issue provides insights into how to solve the child obesity epidemic and close the gap in our current understanding of its causes.


GO, SLOW, WHOA Flowchart

4/1/15 - Follow this flowchart to learn how to make healthier food choices—try to eat more GO foods than SLOW foods, and eat WHOA foods in very small amounts.


Active Play-Active Learning Peer-Led Activity Guide

2/1/15 - The Peer-Led games process of Active Play Active Learning is a way to teach students leadership skills as well as social and emotional skills while they engage in physically active games.


Active Play-Active Learning Playground Marking Guide

2/1/15 - Playground markings are a good way to incorporate physical activity and active learning during recess time as well as class time. This guide includes the list of Playground Markings our team uses, and the simple curriculum that encourages active learning!


Active Play-Active Learning Brain Breaks Guide

2/1/15 - In this guide, we present a range of easy-to-implement “Brain Breaks”- short activity dynamics that can be implemented by the teacher in the classroom setting. The guide is structured in two sections: 1.) General Brain Breaks that can be applied across classes and academic topic areas during any part of the day; and 2.) Academic-specific Brain Breaks that directly correlate to subjects.


Our Kids Want to Walk the Walk

1/12/15 - This infographic shows findings and recommendations from the Texas Childhood Obesity Prevention Policy Evaluation Project.


Our Kids Want to Walk the Walk (PowerPoint)

1/10/15 - Download this PowerPoint version of the T-COPPE "Our Kids Want To Walk the Walk" infographic. Includes list of sources.


Child Obesity in Texas infographic

9/1/14 - Child obesity rates and statistics on obesity-related health behaviors from the 2009-2011 SPAN Survey.


SPAN Survey Fact Sheets

9/1/14 - Download detailed 2009-2011 SPAN Survey results, sorted into one-page fact sheets by grade (4th, 8th, and 11th) and Health Service Region.


Health Fits Into Every Day Infographic

8/31/14 - Health Fits Into Every Day: Tie in all of the CATCH "Health Fits Into Every Day" tip sheets with this infographic.


Health Fits into Every Day: Healthy Snacking Tip Sheet

8/30/14 - Learn about healthy "GO" snacks that help kids maintain energy and focus during the day.


Haga que La Salud Forme Parte de Todos Sus Días: Actividad Física

8/30/14 - Aprenda cómo hacer que sus hijos estén activos durante al menos 60 minutos todos los días.


Health Fits into Every Day: Healthy Breakfast Tip Sheet

8/30/14 - Here are tips on how to eat a healthy breakfast every day.


Health Fits into Every Day: Water Tip Sheet

8/30/14 - Here are some tips on how to fit water into every day.


Haga que La Salud Forme Parte de Todos Sus Días: Botanas

8/30/14 - Conozca las botanas saludables "GO" que ayudan a los niños a mantener la energía y concentrarse durante el día.


Health Fits Into Every Day: Physical Activity Guide

8/30/14 - Learn how to get your kids active for at least 60 minutes every day.


Haga que La Salud Forme Parte de Todos Sus Días: Desayuno

8/30/14 - Aquí hay consejos sobre cómo comer un desayuno saludable todos los días.


Leading Healthy Indicators for CATCH

2/1/14 - CATCH provides a comprehensive and coordinated framework to address many of the key Leading Health Indicators from Healthy People 2020.


Training on Measuring Heights & Weights

6/12/13 - In this video we demonstrate the proper protocol for conducting height and weight measurements.


Entrenamiento Para Medir Alturas y Pesos

6/1/13 - En este video se demuestra el protocolo adecuado para la realización de medidas de altura y peso.


Educating the Student Body: Taking Physical Activity and Physical Education to School (2013)

The Institute of Medicine’s recommendations for strengthening and improving programs and policies for physical activity and physical education in the school environment—including before, during, and after school.


Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention (2012)

5/1/12 - The Institute of Medicine (IOM) evaluated prior obesity prevention strategies and identified recommendations to accelerate progress in obesity prevention. Center faculty, Drs. Steve Kelder and Bill Kohl, sat on the IOM committee that authored the 2012 report.


CATCH in IOM report on Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention

5/1/12 - This excerpt from the 2012 Institute of Medicine report on Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention discusses the evidence base for the CATCH program.


Stay Healthy-Eat Smart

9/1/10 - GO, SLOW and WHOA foods to help you stay healthy eat smart.


"Eat Smart" con CATCH

4/2/10 - Conoces tus alimentos GO - SLOW - WHOA?


Eat Smart with CATCH

4/2/10 - Do you know your GO, SLOW, WHOA foods? This presentation can be used to help teachers, parents, and students learn about the CATCH program's GO, SLOW, WHOA stoplight system for categorizing foods.


Your Elementary School and the CATCH Program

4/1/10 - Learn about the key components of the CATCH elementary school program with this handout.


CATCH Healthy Habits at Home

4/1/10 - This handout contains simple steps that will add up to a big difference in your family’s health. Be a CATCH MVP and select one or two new habits that are best suited for you and your family!


Escuelas Primarias de AISD y el Programa CATCH

4/1/10 - Aprenda sobre los componentes clave del programa de la escuela primaria CATCH con este folleto.


CATCH Your Students At Their Best

4/1/10 - This flyer for parents includes healthy tips from the CATCH program.


Niños sanos aprenden mejor!

4/1/10 - Este volante para padres incluye consejos saludables del programa CATCH.


Deanna Hoelscher Deanna Hoelscher, PhD, RDN, LD, CNS, FISBNPA
Regional Dean, UTHealth School of Public Health in Austin
Director, Michael & Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living

Courtney Byrd-Williams Courtney Byrd-Williams, PhD
Assistant Professor, Health Promotion & Behavioral Sciences