In the US, obesity remains one of the top health concerns across all age and ethnic groups. This is especially true for youth and young adults with physical and cognitive disabilities. To address this, Dr. James Rimmer and his group at the University of Illinois announce 24 Acorns. 24 Acorns is a web portal featuring adapted strategies that communities can use to prevent obesity. Acorns stands for Adaptations to Community-Based Obesity Reduction National Strategies. “24” refers to the 24 Common Community Measures for Obesity Prevention Project initiated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (the CDC). The 24 strategies include improving availability of healthy foods, increasing access to groceries, and requiring physical education in schools. These strategies are important, but haven’t been successfully evaluated in for appropriateness or effectiveness for people with disabilities.
The 24 Acorns site is designed for people with disabilities, community service providers, teachers, clinicians, parents, and others to share insight on how to adapt these measures for the disability community. Visitors to the site can submit their own adaptations to such strategies as
- encouraging breastfeeding
- promoting safe access to physical activity
- improving access to grocery stores
and many more.
Take some time to explore 24 Acorns. If you’re a community member, teacher, policy maker, or clinician, share your experience in preventing obesity in your community!