Rudd Center In The News
Women with obesity who were asked their views about the best strategies to reduce weight stigma say interventions in the workplace, schools, and healthcare should be prioritized, according to a new study by the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at the University of Connecticut. This new study, published today in Obesity Science & Practice, examined the perspectives of 461 women with overweight and obesity (most of whom had experienced weight stigma) about a broad range of potential stigma-reduction strategies. The women are members of the Obesity Action Coalition, a national non-profit group of 54,000 members that supports individuals affected by obesity through education and advocacy.
01/31/2017: The Shame of 'Fat Shaming'
Trying to shame an overweight or obese person into losing weight won't motivate them to do so, and may even raise their risk for heart disease and other health problems, a new study suggests. The more self-blame and devalued that people said they felt when stigmatized, the more likely they were to have health problems that could lead to heart disease, said study leader Rebecca Pearl. She's an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania's Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia. The findings suggest that weight stigma and fat shaming "go much deeper than the inappropriate remarks or hurt feelings," said Dr. Rebecca Puhl, deputy director of the University of Connecticut Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity. She co-wrote a commentary that accompanied the study.
Such families often live in “food deserts,” described by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as mostly urban areas—such as some neighborhoods in Hartford, New Haven and Bridgeport—where access to healthy food is limited or non-existent due to a lack of grocery stories, farmers markets, and other providers of healthy food. Consumers in these areas instead depend on “quickie marts,” which offer processed, sugar- and fat-laden foods, according to the USDA. But even if there is access to vegetables and healthier food options, children living in poverty often don’t get the chance to try them. “If you’re not sure your kid’s going to eat it, you’re not going to put some expensive vegetable in front of your kid. For a low-income parent, that’s a huge deal,” said Marlene Schwartz, director of the UConn Rudd Center for Food Policy. The center’s mission is to promote solutions to childhood obesity through research and policy. Food preferences are formed in early childhood. But kids can learn to accept more foods, like fruits and vegetables, through repeated exposure—exactly the process Schwartz said poor parents can’t afford.
New Haven Register
But even if there is access to vegetables and healthier food options, children living in poverty often don't get the chance to try them.?"If you're not sure your kid's going to eat it, you're not going to put some expensive vegetable in front of your kid. For a low-income parent, that's a huge deal," said Marlene Schwartz, director of the UConn Rudd Center for Food Policy. The center's mission is to promote solutions to childhood obesity through research and policy. Food preferences are formed in early childhood. But kids can learn to accept more foods, like fruits and vegetables, through repeated exposure—exactly the process Schwartz said poor parents can't afford.
01/26/2017: iEat Green – Jennifer Harris, Radio Interview
Dr. Harris is a leading expert on food marketing to youth, and her research is widely used by the public health community and policymakers to improve the food marketing environment surrounding children and adolescents in the United States and worldwide. Specific areas of research include monitoring and evaluating the amount, types, and nutrition quality of food and drinks marketed to youth and families; the psychology of food marketing and its impact on health behaviors; and identifying effective policy solutions. Her current research focuses on targeted marketing and health disparities affecting black and Hispanic youth; new forms of marketing targeted to youth on social media and mobile devices; and effects of food marketing on what and how parents feed their babies and young children.
Progressive Radio Network