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School & Program Updates

School & Program Updates

UNC: NAPSACC Program Receives National Recognition As ‘Best Evidence For Impact’ On Childhood Obesity

A recent brief by Healthy Eating Research, a national program of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, states that the Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (NAPSACC) has the “best evidence for impact” on obesity prevention in young children.

Developed by the Children’s Healthy Weight Research Group at the UNC Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, NAPSACC is an evidence-based program with a proven track record of reducing childhood obesity risk. It guides child care providers through a five-step process to help them create environments that foster healthy eating and physical activity.

The brief recommends that NAPSACC be incorporated into states’ existing Quality Rating and Improvement Systems as a way to maximize its reach, concluding that the program “shows the best evidence for impact on early childhood obesity risk among interventions specifically targeted to children under five.”

“Research has shown that NAPSACC helps child care providers create meaningful changes. These healthier environments, in turn, lead to children who eat a healthier diet, are more active, and are less likely to be overweight or obese,” said Dr. Dianne Ward, professor of nutrition at the University of North Carolina Gillings School and director of the Children’s Healthy Weight Research Group. “We are delighted that NAPSACC has been recommended to policymakers. Since 2014, we have been working with an online version of the program, Go NAPSACC, which can make the program even easier and cheaper for states to use.”

Go NAPSACC currently is in use by 20 states and continues to expand. State agencies, such as public health departments or child care monitoring programs, can enroll in the program to receive access to the full set of online tools.

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