Universities, health center participate in obesity project

REUTERS/Rick Wilking

 (REUTERS/Rick Wilking)

Teams from three states are participated in a federally funded project to combat childhood obesity along the U.S.-Mexico border.

New Mexico State University announced Tuesday that its involvement in the project will be funded by $1.5 million of a five-year $4.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Other participants in the project include Texas A&M University, Baylor University in Waco, Texas, and Mariposa Community Health Center in Nogales, Arizona.

Health researcher Jill McDonald of New Mexico State says preventing childhood is a priority because it leads to dramatic increases in child-onset diabetes and other chronic conditions late in life.

Professor Joe Sharkey of Texas A&M says the project will use a family-centered approach to reduce childhood obesity through research, education and services.