The IOM is pleased that its studies and reports on preventing childhood obesity and setting nutrition standards for the foods and beverages available in schools have provided useful evidence-based information to help guide policymakers in tackling the important issue of childhood obesity.
The IOM's study results underscore that preventing childhood obesity requires a multifaceted effort that involves multiple responsible parties -- health care providers, parents, schools, local, state, and federal government officials, and the food and beverage industries -- working in concert to be successful. As the report Preventing Childhood Obesity put it, implementing the necessary preventive actions "will require the involvement of multiple stakeholders from diverse segments of society. This must be a national effort with special attention given to communities that experience health disparities and that have environments that do not support healthful nutrition and physical activity. Although a number of organizations, industries, institutions, and agencies must be involved in designing and implementing changes, efforts cannot succeed unless they also engage the families, schools, and communities that create the environments in which children live and their behaviors are formed."
The IOM has provided the evidence for steps and strategies that can work to reduce the nation's rate of childhood obesity in a series of reports reviewing various facets of obesity prevention.
School Meals: Building Blocks for Healthy Children
This report provides recommendations to update the nutrition standard and the meal requirements for the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs. The report sets standards for menu planning that focus on food groups, calories, saturated fat, and sodium and that incorporate Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the Dietary Reference Intakes.
Nutrition Standards for Foods in Schools: Leading the Way Toward Healthier Youth
This report offers recommendations about appropriate nutrition standards for foods and beverages offered in competition with federally reimbursable school meals programs.
Local Government Actions to Prevent Childhood Obesity
This report recommends action steps for local government officials to curb obesity among children in their communities.
Preventing Childhood Obesity: Health in the Balance
This report offers a comprehensive national strategy with specific actions for families, schools, industry, communities, and government.
Progress In Preventing Childhood Obesity: How Do We Measure Up?
This report assesses the progress made by obesity prevention initiatives in the two-year period following the release of Preventing Childhood Obesity: Health in the Balance.
Food Marketing to Children and Youth: Threat or Opportunity?
This report determines that food and beverage marketing practices puts children's long-term health at risk and offers a guide for developing effective marketing and advertising strategies that promote healthier foods, beverages, and meal options to children and youth.
The Public Health Effects of Food Deserts: Workshop Summary
This report contains discussions on the absence of affordable healthy food options such as fresh produce in low-income neighborhoods and the effect this has on residents’ health.