Public-support-strong-for-policies-environments-that-ecourage-physical-activity

Public support strong for policies & environments that ecourage physical activity

Most people across the country support local policies that encourage physical activity in worksites, communities, and especially schools, according to a new study written by researchers at the Tulane Prevention Research Center (PRC) and other universities.

"This study is the first of its kind to examine on a national level how people view policies related to physical activity and healthy environments," said Jeanette Gustat, the study's lead author and a faculty investigator at the Tulane PRC. "This is particularly important because it can help planners, policymakers and health professionals understand the public's support for environmental and policy changes."

More than 1,200 adults participated in the study's phone survey, developed by the Physical Activity Policy Research Network (PAPRN), a national research network funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to study physical activity policies. The findings were published in a special issue of the American Journal of Health Promotion in January.

The survey asked questions related to gauging their support for physical activity policies in schools, worksites and communities; neighborhood features and amenities related to physical activity and healthy eating; and time spent in physical activity and sedentary behaviors. Participants reported their weight and height (used to calculate BMI) and other personal characteristics. The study compared answers from participants living in counties or parishes with high levels of obesity and sedentary behavior to answers from those living in counties or parishes with low levels of obesity and sedentary behavior.

People reported the strongest support for policies in schools, and this opinion did not differ between the two types of counties or parishes. People in both areas also expressed support for physical activity policies at worksites and in communities, but those in counties or parishes with low levels of obesity and sedentary behavior had stronger overall support for physical activity policies in communities. Support for community physical activity policies that didn't involve tax increases received slightly stronger support than policies that included tax increases from people in both areas.

Additionally, positive perceptions of neighborhood environments, such as having outlets for physical activity and healthy eating, were related to decreased obesity and improved physical activity levels for participants.

"This shows the importance of creating a healthy neighborhood environment because when residents feel their community supports physical activity and healthy eating they are more likely to be physically active and healthy," said Keelia O'Malley, an author on the study and assistant director of the Tulane PRC.

(Posted January 2014)

Topics:   built environment , policy , physical activity , obesity , sidewalks , bike lanes , food environment , running

Other Related Posts

NOLA-LEADs-finds-positive-results-from-citizen-training-program-

NOLA LEADs finds positive results from citizen-training program

Education & Engagement Special Interest Projects (SIPs)

Published: April 10, 2018

Anyone can be a health leader and improve their community, if given the right tools and skills. That’s what the Tulane Prevention Research Center's two-year NOLA LEADs (Leadership Education & Action on health Disparities) citizen-training project has found since completing its work. Keeping with the project's goal of helping all who are concerned about improving the lives of their neighbors and the conditions of their communities, the team has put together a one-page summary to…

Read More

Closing-the-policymaking-gap-Tackling-barriers-to-improving-public-health-in-Louisiana

Closing the policymaking gap: Tackling barriers to improving public health in Louisiana

Education & Engagement

Published: April 08, 2018

When attempting to address Louisiana's consistently low rankings in national health reports, public health professionals can have a positive influence on the policy-making process through research and education, according to recently published work from the Tulane public health researchers. From 2013 to 2014, a team of faculty and staff at the Tulane Nutrition Program and Tulane Prevention Research Center explored strategies for improving public health in Louisiana by conducting policy research and educating lawmakers. The…

Read More

Tulane-graduate-hikes-the-Underground-Railroad

Tulane graduate hikes the Underground Railroad

Education & Engagement

Published: April 05, 2018

Recent Tulane University graduate Chyna Johnson spent five days in March in the footsteps of abolitionist Harriet Tubman this week as part of a 100-mile trek along the route of the Underground Railroad. The Underground Railroad, a network of secret routes and safe houses used by African-American slaves to escape to free states, ran north to the free states and Canada. (Click on the image above to see a slideshow from the trek.) Johnson is…

Read More

Message-from-the-Director

Message from the Director

Education & Engagement Food Environment Research

Published: April 01, 2018

Spring is here and summer is right around the corner. We always think of spring as a time of new beginnings and renewal. Certainly, it can be that way with us as well. The weather is mild (not too hot yet) so it's a good time to think about being outdoors more. Spring is conducive to growth, so it's a good time to plant a garden, especially vegetables. What could be fresher than that? There…

Read More

Tulane-PRC-to-present-core-research-and-other-work-at-Society-of-Behavioral-Medicine

Tulane PRC to present core research and other work at Society of Behavioral Medicine

Core Research

Published: April 01, 2018

The Tulane Prevention Research Center (PRC) faculty, staff and students are scheduled to give 11 presentations at the Society of Behavioral Medicine's 39th Annual Meeting, held in New Orleans this week. The meeting draws thousands of researchers, public health professionals, community members, and advocates from across the country and the world. Among the topics that will be presented by the Tulane PRC are community-based cooking classes, social marketing for health promotion, community engagement, photovoice, and…

Read More

Tulane-partnership-with-FitLot-provides-students-with-assessment-experience-in-aging-populations

Tulane partnership with FitLot provides students with assessment experience in aging populations

Education & Engagement Physical Activity Research

Published: April 01, 2018

Transforming the built environment of a community can make a difference in how citizens feel about accessibility of physical fitness. Since the start of March, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine faculty and students have been engaging with local participants of The FitLot Method Program, an outdoor, group fitness program designed to meet the needs of adults 55 years and older. FitLot, a longtime community partner of the Tulane Prevention Research Center…

Read More

Community-Partner-Updates

Community Partner Updates

Education & Engagement

Published: April 01, 2018

See what our Community Advisory Board (CAB) members and partners have been up to recently! Click on the photo for a gallery of pictures, and read below for related updates. To find out more about our partners, click here to visit our Community Partners page. Photos 1-5: Women With A Vision Inc. Women with a Vision Inc. has been busy developing a garden with a spirit that transcends the physical space. As a part of…

Read More

Team-Spotlight

Team Spotlight

Education & Engagement

Published: April 01, 2018

This newsletter's team spotlight features four graduating student research assistants who supported numerous Tulane Prevention Research Center (PRC) projects and programs over the past year. Through one-on-one training and mentorship, these master's students have worked diligently to apply the skills, knowledge, frameworks and strategies learned in classes to the community-based work of the PRC. "These students have worked diligently on community projects, and we are very proud of them," said Tulane PRC Director Carolyn Johnson.…

Read More

Upcoming-seminar-shares-innovative-peer-led-diabetes-prevention

Upcoming seminar shares innovative, peer-led diabetes prevention

Education & Engagement

Published: April 01, 2018

Please join the Tulane Prevention Research Center on Wednesday, April 11, for the Spring 2018 Innovations in Public Health Research and Practice Seminar: "Prevention of Diabetes in India: What evidence is there for scale-up?" Light refreshments will be provided. This seminar is free and open to the public. Wednesday, April 11, 2018, from 12-1:30 p.m. in the Diboll Auditorium, 1st Floor, Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1440 Canal Street, New Orleans Featuring…

Read More

Legislative-Updates

Legislative Updates

Education & Engagement

Published: April 01, 2018

Louisiana Obesity Commission publishes annual report Since 2014, the Louisiana Obesity Prevention and Management Commission has been tasked by state lawmakers to address obesity statewide and its associated diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. The commission recently presented its annual report to the state Legislature. The report, published in February 2018, includes recommendations for future Commission activities and highlights the Commission’s activities during the timeframe of April 2017-November 2017. Click here to…

Read More

canary