UIC gets money to study childhood obesity factors

CHICAGO -- The University of Illinois-Chicago says it has been awarded a $4.4 million grant to study environmental factors and governmental policies that affect children's nutrition, physical activity and obesity.

The university says the money is from the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation and will be used by the school's ImpacTeen project.

Researchers will survey schools on fast foods and other factors such as participation in meals and what sorts of foods and drinks are available to children at mealtime.

The university says researchers also will evaluate other factors such as zoning ordinances for sidewalks, crosswalks and bicycle lanes and taxes on sugary drinks.

The goal of the research is to identify policies and practices that could help cut childhood obesity.