The objective of this application is to support the career development of Dr. Helena Laroche. Dr. Laroche's long term career goal is to become a nationally recognized investigator in obesity prevention through the development of multi-level family-focused interventions using Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) approaches. Dr. Laroche has assembled a team of experienced mentors (Drs. Robert Wallace, Linda Snetselaar, and Toni Tripp Reimer), who bring expertise in complementary methodological areas and experience in nurturing young investigators. Her research will focus on parent-child interactions around diet and community-based family-focused obesity prevention in rural areas. During the award Dr. Laroche will: 1) develop skills in the measurement of diet, exercise, and body fat;2) receive advanced training in biostatistics and qualitative methods;3) build skills in rural CBPR methods;and 4) develop expertise in designing community-based interventions in rural settings. These goals will be accomplished though targeted coursework, tutorials, reading, and direct experiences guided by her mentors. Dr. Laroche will conduct 3 projects to first understand and then intervene on family dietary patterns. Project 1 will use data from the longitudinal CARDIA study (funded by NHLBI) to examine the influences of children on parents'dietary patterns. Analyses will compare changes in diets among adults who do and do not have children. Project 2 will use a mix of qualitative and quantitative approaches, including focus groups, interviews and surveys of parents, children, and representatives from community organizations to examine community influences on families'diet behaviors. Project 2 will also identify community resources than can be mobilized to promote positive dietary changes in families. Using findings from Project 2, Project 3 will use CBPR methods to design and implement a pilot community obesity prevention intervention aimed at rural families with children. Projects 2 and 3 will capitalize on a successful University of Iowa research partnership with two rural Iowa communities that is built on a successful CBPR framework. These projects will explore how adults and children affect one another's diet, barriers to healthy diets in rural families, and opportunities for communities to support healthy diets in families. Then a community based project will be developed to help families improve their diets.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award (K23)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZHL1-CSR-R (M1))
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Pratt, Charlotte
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University of Iowa
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
Iowa City
United States
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Laroche, Helena H; Wallace, Robert B; Snetselaar, Linda et al. (2013) Weight gain among men and women who have a child enter their home. J Acad Nutr Diet 113:1504-10
Laroche, Helena H; Wallace, Robert B; Snetselaar, Linda et al. (2012) Changes in diet behavior when adults become parents. J Acad Nutr Diet 112:832-9