The SNaX Program is a five-week obesity prevention and intervention program
geared toward middle school students. Interventions in schools show much
promise for improving that particular nutritional environment.
The SNaX program employs a format that is meant to promote schoolwide
environmental changes and encourage students to eat healthy foods
that are offered in the school cafeteria. There also is peer-led education.
On Thursday, March 20, Dr. Laura M. Bogart will speak at the NIH Campus
in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Bogart will discuss the partnership with
participating school districts, and review the results of the control trial.
Dr. Bogart is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Harvard
Medical School and the Research Director of the Division of General
Pediatrics at the Boston Children’s Hospital.
The SNaX Program
The SNaX Intervention is a series of five one-week programs that focus on
the separate health themes about healthy beverages, cafeteria options,
the benefits of eating healthy, being physically active, and understanding the messages carried in the media.
Each week, students are invited to become peer leaders. They meet once a
week with Prevention Research Trainers (PRT) and are educated about how
media messaging regarding diet and exercise can be inaccurate. They also
learn things such as how drinking water after exercise can rehydrate
without the sugar found in sports drinks, as well as other simple messages.
Students also learn to work on counseling skills so they relate to their
classmates what they have learned.
In addition, graphic designers help produce school posters that advise
students to be active and make healthy choices at lunch. Signs are used
to advertise menu items and the calorie counts of those items. PRT
workers also coordinate with cafeteria employees to promote nutritious
foods. Free filtered water is offered to all students at lunchtime.
The Five Weeks of SNaX
Week one focuses on beverage choices. It points out that water is a
healthy drink. Students are taught to give thought to what they are
Week two focuses on the food options in the cafeteria. Students are
taught that there are good tasting, healthy meals in the cafeteria and
educated about healthy fats.
Week three focuses on eating a healthy diet. Information is given about
how food preparation and volume of consumption determines its
healthiness. Students are taught to identify those foods that are most
healthy and to know the facts about fruit and vegetables.
Week four focuses on balancing food consumption and physical activity.
Students are advised about eating in moderation and why physical
activity is so good for them. They recommend 60 minutes of exercise
daily but point out that being active can be addressed in 10-minute
increments throughout the day.
Week five is about understanding messages seen or heard in the media. Also,
how fast food restaurants and snack food makers try to encourage
children to buy and eat junk food.
Living life well-fed,
My Bariatric Life
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Published On: March 05, 2014