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Lessler publishes new study in Science Advances

May 2, 2022

Faculty Fellow Justin Lessler, PhD is co-author of a new study published in Science Advances on “In-person schooling and associated COVID-19 risk in the United States over spring semester 2021.” Because of the importance of schools to childhood development, the relationship between in-person schooling and COVID-19 risk has been one of the most important questions…

UNC’s New Vice Chancellor, Dr. Penny Gordon-Larsen

April 6, 2022

Professor Penny Gordon-Larsen was appointed interim vice chancellor for research on March 14, 2022. She previously served as the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Healthʼs associate dean for research, a position she held since September 2018. In that role, she provided intellectual and strategic leadership and vision for the schoolʼs research programs and activities,…


Consensus statement on definition and diagnosis of sarcopenic obesity published

March 7, 2022

A consensus statement on the definition and diagnosis of sarcopenic obesity was released by the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) and the European Association for the Study of Obesity (EASO), and simultaneously published in Clinical Nutrition. Faculty Fellow John Batsis, MD was a member of the International Consensus Definition workgroup. He has…

John Batsis

Remarks from John Batsis on behalf of AGS

March 7, 2022

Faculty Fellow John Batsis MD served as the American Geriatrics Society representative on the Obesity and Equitable Aging Roundtable held by the National Council on Aging Roundtable last October. Last month, the National Council on Aging held a virtual meeting with Dr. Meena Seshamani, the Deputy Director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services…

Picture warnings on sodas? A promising tool to fight childhood obesity

February 1, 2022

A study published today in the journal PLOS Medicine is the first to examine in a realistic setting whether pictorial health warnings on sugary drinks — like juice and soda — influence which beverages parents buy for their children. The findings are promising: The warnings reduced parental purchases of sugary drinks for their kids by…

the UNC Mini Mart, a 245-square foot naturalistic store laboratory in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Produce prescriptions can save money. New project asks how much?

January 4, 2022

A new project will be exploring the benefits of food prescription programs, which provide a monthly electronic benefit for participants to buy fresh fruits and vegetables. In early studies, this type of intervention has been shown to improve health outcomes. With a $765,000 grant from The Duke Endowment, this project will investigate a new facet…

"fruit" by Sean MacEntee is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Preventing malaria after heavy flooding incidents

September 9, 2021

As temperatures grow warmer around the globe, we’ve witnessed an increase in the intensity and frequency of extreme weather events. Nearly half of the global disasters over the past two decades have been caused by extreme precipitation and flooding, including 64% of the events in the African region. While heavy rainfall may wash away existing…

New study shows reduction of unhealthy food purchases from package of healthy food policies in Chile

August 12, 2021

[caption id="attachment_69289" align="alignright" width="225"] Lindsey Smith Taillie[/caption] A recently published study in The Lancet Planetary Health shows that Chile’s package of healthy food policies successfully reduced purchases of unhealthy food and drinks during the first phase of the law’s implementation. Researchers from the University of Chile, University of North Carolina and the National Institute of…

SuperSNAP Helps Food Insecure Households Afford Healthy Foods

August 11, 2021

Led by UNC-Chapel Hill researchers, a new JAMA study showed that an additional $40 per month for SNAP beneficiaries substantially increased the purchase of healthier food options for people who struggle with food insecurity. CHAPEL HILL, NC – Food insecurity is associated with a less healthy diet. And using the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP),…

Q&A: Growing concern over the prevalence of ultra-processed foods in American diets

August 10, 2021

The accessibility, affordability and convenience of ultra-processed foods have made them a common staple in stores and pantries. But these foods, which are high in added sugars, oils, fats and other substances that normally wouldn’t be used in cooking, are growing more pervasive in American diets, especially for kids. Dr. Katie Meyer Dr. Lindsey Smith…