Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)


Clinical Nutrition

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Deborah Slawson

Committee Members

Michael Breslin, Elizabeth F. Lowe


Children's energy consumption is outweighing their energy expenditure, increasing the risk for childhood obesity. While pediatric obesity continues to be a problem in America, the data are clear that those of low socioeconomic status are especially at risk for weight gain. The purpose of this study was to evaluate if a healthy lifestyle program could affect participants' diet and physical activity behavior. A program was planned and conducted using the curriculum from the "We Can" program established by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Residents of the Jefferson City Housing Authority were asked to participate. No resident attended or completed the healthy lifestyle program. Follow-up focus groups with stakeholders and potential participants showed that lack of motivation was the greatest barrier to participation. Further investigation is needed to determine a more suitable venue to educate at-risk populations regarding the risk associated with pediatric obesity.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.