DYC Professor Part of Evaluation Team for Major Childhood Obesity Study
Buffalo, New York – January 23, 2015 – Dr. Renee Cadzow, assistant professor in Health Services Administration and co-director of the Center for Research on Physical Activity at D’Youville College, was part of an evaluation team that analyzed date from a major study of childhood obesity affecting children in grades three through 12 in the Lockport City School District.
Titled “School-Based Obesity Intervention Associated with Three Year Decrease in Student Weight Status in Low-Income School District” the study involved approximately 4,000 students over the three-year period and was conducted by the Lockport City School District with assistance from the University at Buffalo Primary Care Research Institute.
Funding was provided by the U.S. Department of Education Carol M. White Physical Education Program Grant and ran from 2007 to 2010.
“School based interventions to improve health have been shown to decrease intake of non-nutritional foods, increase student physical activity and education student about healthy food choices,” Cadzow said.
District officials noted that students lacked knowledge about fitness and nutrition and sufficient time to meet state physical activity and physical education requirements.
To address this, program goals and objectives were aligned and new fitness equipment that included virtual reality bikes, cardio equipment, spinning bikes and strength training equipment was purchased, for the for the Lockport school. After school programming, physical education staff training and time to oversee community access to school athletic facilities were initiated.
The study involved the collection of student height and weight once per semester for six semesters and consisted of data from elementary, middle, and high school students.
“It was found the weight status improved for many students over the three year time period,” Cadzow said. “These results may also mean that consistent monitoring and discussion about health weight and associated healthy behaviors may have resulted in behavior change and weight loss for the children.”
Other members of the evaluation team included Meghan K. Chambers, MPH, Research Support Specialist and Angela M.D. Sandell, MD, University at Buffalo Medical Resident.
Dr. Cadzow is a graduate of Miami University in Ohio and earned her master’s and doctorate degrees in Biological Anthropology from the University at Buffalo (UB). She served as an assistant professor at UB's Department of Family Medicine Primary Care Research Institute, prior to joining the D’Youville faculty. She was also a Senior Research Support Specialist for the New York State Area Health, Education Center System.
She is widely published in Peer Reviewed Journals, mainstream media, national presentations, evaluation and technical reports, school evaluation reports and has lectured extensively. A current board member of the Erie-Niagara Area Health Education Center and the Community Health Worker Network of Buffalo where she chairs the Academic Advisory Council she also co-chairs a number of local health organizations.
The complete results of the study were published in the current issue of the Journal of Community Health, a national health care publication.