LA Sprouts: A School Based Gardening, Nutrition, and Cooking Program Reduces Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders in Latino Youth

Jaimie N. Davis, PhD, University of Texas at Austin

Learning objectives:

1) To review the literature on how school-based gardening programs have improved dietary intake and health outcomes.

2) To discuss how the “LA Sprouts” program, which is an after-school 12-week gardening, nutrition and cooking program for primarily low-income Hispanic elementary students, has resulted in reductions in obesity and improved dietary intake and related dietary behaviors.

3) To identify key strategies and components in this program that resulted in the improved health outcomes.

Jaimie Davis is a Registered Dietitian and Assistant Professor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at Austin. Her research focuses on designing and disseminating nutrition, physical activity, and behavioral interventions to reduce obesity and related metabolic disorders in overweight youth, primarily for low-income minority populations. She has extensive expertise in nutrition physical activity, and body composition assessment in pediatric populations. Many of her studies among obese Hispanic youth have shown protective effects of diets low in sugar intake, specifically sugar sweetened beverages, and high in dietary fiber and fruits and vegetables against increased obesity and related metabolic diseases. Dr. Davis’s research also involves developing and testing school and community based gardening and cooking programs targeting obesity prevention and treatment for low-income minority populations.

LA Sprouts: A 12-Week Gardening, Nutrition, and Cooking Randomized Control Trial Improves Determinants of Dietary Behaviors