Project: Food Prices and Availability and Children's Health and Developmental Outcomes
Award Year: 2003
Amount of award, fiscal 2003: $174,897.00
Institution: RAND
Principal Investigator: Roland Sturm
Status: Completed
Detailed Objective: Childhood overweight has been increasing at an alarming rate over the past several decades. Given USDA's role in providing nutritious foods to children through its school meal programs, new information on obesity in relationship to the school and neighborhood environment and the relationship of obesity to school performance remains timely.

The study's goals are to: 1) examine the association between obesity and children's academic and developmental outcomes in elementary school; 2) examine the association between neighborhood characteristics, especially the supply of groceries and food price levels and childhood obesity; and 3) simulate the impact of changes in neighborhood food price and availability on children's outcomes.

The analyses will use data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Kindergarten Class of 1998-99, a nationally representative data set that follows a cohort of children from kindergarten up to grade 5. The data set contains information on a wide range of child outcomes as well as detailed geographic identifiers that enable inclusion of neighborhood level factors in the analysis. The study design is prospective in nature allowing examination of changes in health outcomes of young children over time.

Topic: Food Prices and Demand, Obesity
Dataset: Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Kindergarten Class (ECLS-K)
Datar, A., and R. Sturm. "Childhood Overweight and Elementary School Outcomes," International Journal of Obesity, Vol. 30, Issue 9, September 2006.
Sturm, R., and A. Datar. "Body Mass Index in Elementary School Children, Metropolitan Area Food Prices and Food Outlet Density," Public Health, Vol. 119, Issue 12, December 2005.
Sturm, R., and A. Datar. Metropolitan Area Food Prices and Children's Weight Gain, Contractor and Cooperator Report No. 14, USDA, ERS, December 2005.