age, sex, socioeconomic status, and race/ethnicity; culture, immigration status and acculturation; bio-behavioral and gene-environment interactions; psychosocial status; and social, political, and historical contexts. Context refers to the set of factors or circumstances that surround a situation or event and give meaning to its interpretation. All of these factors should be taken into account when designing, monitoring, and evaluating obesity prevention initiatives as depicted in Figure S-1.

The committee has identified several relevant criteria that can be used to judge the design and quality of interventions and encourages funders and program planners to consider the following actions:

  • Include diverse perspectives and attend to the sub-populations in the greatest need of prevention actions—particularly underserved, low-income, and high-risk populations that experience health disparities;

  • Use relevant empirical evidence relevant to the specific context when designing and implementing the intervention;

  • Identify similar or potentially synergistic efforts and make important cross-sectoral linkages and sustained collaborations; and

  • Link structural, environmental, and behavioral changes in individuals and populations relevant to childhood obesity prevention.


The committee developed five broad conclusions (Box S-2) based on its assessment of progress in preventing childhood obesity that serve as the foundation for the report’s recommendations and implementation actions discussed in the report.


Reflective of the collective and interrelated responsibility of multiple sectors and stakeholders to create a healthy marketplace and media environment, healthy communities, healthy school environments, and healthy home environments, the committee developed four recommendations for this report. The committee’s recommendations are relevant across five major sectors—government, industry, communities, schools, and home. The first recommendation underscores the importance of promoting leadership and commitment to treat childhood obesity prevention as an urgent national priority. The remaining three recommendations serve as the basis for evaluation activities within and across the sectors, accounting for interdependencies and dynamic changes that will affect obesity prevention actions. More details about the implementation of the recommendations for each sector are discussed throughout the report and collated in Appendix E.

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