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Targeted Advertising Can Increase Healthy Food Choices Among College Students

Stephanie Spera
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KEY FINDINGS

  • The addition of healthy food marketing materials was associated with an increase in healthy food purchases among college students.
  • The average daily purchase of veggie burgers increased by 4.2, rice bowls increased by 2.1, and hummus increased by 2.4 units.
  • Total daily purchases of the three target items in the treatment café increased from an average of 10.5 daily before the intervention to an average of 19.2 daily after intervention Continue Reading

A Simple Mindfulness Practice Can Improve Mental Health

Mary Kate Lee
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Depression, anxiety, and related mental distress are rising at alarming rates in the U.S. Mental distress can come from thinking too much about the past, continuing to play back events that have already happened, or worrying about the future and focusing on “what ifs.” Staying mindful of the present helps boost your positive emotions and allows you be more engaged in daily activities. Mindfulness practices have been a large part of the Buddhist tradition for over 2,000 years and have recently become so popular in the U.S. that some medical professionals are turning to them to help their patients.1

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The Increase in Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome from Opioids Affects Us All

Sean Withington, Shannon Monnat 
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Opioid misuse and dependence during pregnancy has increased dramatically in the U.S. in recent years, paralleling the increase in opioid use disorders seen in the general U.S. population. This has resulted in a rapid increase in the number of babies who are born with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) – physical dependence on opioids. Cases of NAS nearly doubled from 13,500 in 2009 to 25,000 in 2016 and continue to rise.1

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More Kindergarteners are Exempted from Required School Vaccinations than in the Past

Kent Jason G. Cheng
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Measles cases in the U.S. have soared over the past two years. After ending 2018 with 372 measles cases, 206 cases were reported in the first two months of 2019 alone. Outbreaks like these are mostly occurring in communities with low childhood vaccination rates. Parents are required by law to vaccinate their children before they go to kindergarten except when the student has medical issues or when states allow exemptions for religious or philosophical reasons. Twenty states have proposed new vaccination exemption bills already in 2019.

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An Apple a Day Keeps Diabetes at Bay: Incentivizing Participation in Diabetes Self-Management Education with Fruit & Vegetable Vouchers

Angie Mejia, Mary Kate Lee, Shannon M. Monnat
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KEY FINDINGS

  • Providing vouchers to low-income Type 2 diabetes patients increases their purchase of fruits and vegetables.
  • Participation in diabetes self-management education was associated with increases in fruit and vegetable intake, weight loss, and a decrease in blood sugar levels among low-income adults with Type 2 diabetes.
  • Integrating a fruit and vegetable purchase assistance incentive with diabetes self-management education is a cost-effective way to increase low-income patient participation in diabetes self-management education and improve self-management knowledge and behaviors. Continue Reading

Jumpstart your Week with a Monday Mile

Mary Kate Lee, Bonnie Slocum
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Physical activity has numerous health benefits and is an essential part of living a healthy life. Walking, for example, can help build stronger bones and muscles, increase balance, mobility, and flexibility, and lower blood pressure. Your mind also benefits from physical activity. Movement throughout the day can help sharpen focus, increase critical thinking skills and creativity, and reduce stress. The Monday Mile is a simple and easy way to start your week off right and get in your daily physical activity. Local communities, workplaces, and schools can use the Monday Mile to promote physical wellness and social connection among their residents, employees, and students.

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Lerner Chair, Shannon Monnat, wins Prestigious Award from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Shannon Monnat, Lerner Chair for Public Health Promotion and Associate Professor of Sociology, was recently presented with a Thought Leadership Award from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Connections Program (http://rwjf-newconnections.org/). This award is intended to recognize a scholar who has made outstanding accomplishments in research outreach and communications. Dr. Monnat was recognized for her substantial activities in translating research to public and policy audiences, including through public research briefs, op-eds, media communications, public presentations, and congressional briefings.