We are currently researching into

Obesity

Obesity is becoming an increasingly critical health issue, especially so in children. Around 30 per cent of New Zealand children are overweight or obese, predisposing them to long-term, adverse health outcomes including coronary, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes among others.

Funding Amount:

$1,605,183.00

In Progress Research

National data platform for tracking children’s growth trajectories

Data sources used to monitor growth among tamariki and rangatahi in New Zealand are fragmented, do not contain information for 0-2-year-olds, have big gaps for school-aged children, and are mostly aggregated at the national level. This means New Zealand lacks group-specific information (e.g.: by age, region and socio-demographics) on prevalence, trends, and determinants of healthy growth among 0-19-year-olds. This information…

Evaluation of a Healthy Lifestyle Check app for screening of weight

Obesity affects approximately 79,000 children aged 2-14 years in New Zealand. Contemporary international data from 2.3 million teens show that those affected are almost five times more likely to die from coronary heart disease within 40 years compared with normal-weight peers. In New Zealand, higher rates of obesity are experienced by Māori (1.6 times), Pasifika (4.7 times), and those living…

Improving children’s nutrition via school lunches

Phase one of Nourishing Hawke’s Bay: He wairua tō te kai worked with communities and rangatahi using systems science methods and mātauranga Māori to develop systems maps and action plans for improving children’s nutrition. At the same time, the Government announced the national programme for free school lunchs (Ka Ora, Ka Ako) for the most disadvantaged schools as part of its COVID…

Ongoing follow-up for study of fish oil in pregnancy, including breastfeeding and early childhood

What is the problem and who does it affect? Children of women who are overweight or obese during pregnancy are more likely to have problems with excess weight, high blood pressure, and diabetes later in life. The Fish Oil in Pregnancy Study was a randomised controlled trial that assessed whether taking fish oil might help prevent these problems. Preliminary data…

Development of evidence-based and culturally appropriate advice to support children with rapid weight gain

One third of our young tamariki are an unhealthy weight prior to starting school, which has implications for their future health and wellbeing. However a big gap exists in current knowledge about how best to manage children when excessively rapid weight gain is identified as part of routine childcare. Professor Barry Taylor, from the University of Otago, will lead a…

Studying the chewing patterns and food habits of obese children

Professor Mauro Farella University of Otago Obesity is a problem for many young New Zealanders. More than 10 per cent of children aged between 2 and 14 are obese. Prevalence is even higher certain populations, such as Maori and Pasifika. Recent research has shown that certain eating behaviours contribute to the issue, including different chewing patterns. More data on chewing…

Looking at the link between thresholds for gestational diabetes and infant health

Dr Chris McKinlay University of Auckland New Zealand’s population often stands out when it comes to health statistics, regularly falling behind countries with a similar level of economic and social development. Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) – diabetes that happens during pregnancy – is one such area. Nearly 10 per cent of New Zealand women are affected, which is high compared…

Translational modelling to inform an evidence-based childhood obesity intervention agenda: Growing up in Australia and New Zealand

Professor Cameron Grant The University of Auckland In 2017, Cure Kids collaborated on a joint, contestable funding round with The National Science Challenge, A Better Start. The aim of the partnership was to fund high-quality, mission-led research focused on child and youth well-being, specifically in the areas of childhood obesity, early literacy and learning, mental health problems, and autism spectrum disorder…

Obesity Prevention Using Systems Science

Boyd Swinburn University of Auckland In 2017, Cure Kids collaborated on a joint, contestable funding round with The National Science Challenge, A Better Start. The aim of the partnership was to fund high-quality, mission-led research focused on child and youth well-being, specifically in the areas of childhood obesity, early literacy and learning, mental health problems, and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In…

See how they grow: Developing and trialling an interactive Child Growth Chart for NZ children

Gayl Humphrey University of Auckland In 2017, Cure Kids collaborated on a joint, contestable funding round with The National Science Challenge, A Better Start. The aim of the partnership was to fund high-quality, mission-led research focused on child and youth well-being, specifically in the areas of childhood obesity, early literacy and learning, mental health problems, and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In…

Whānau Pakari: understanding barriers to engagement, participation and retention in obesity intervention for children and adolescents

Dr Yvonne Anderson University of Auckland  In 2017, Cure Kids collaborated on a joint, contestable funding round with The National Science Challenge, A Better Start. The aim of the partnership was to fund high-quality, mission-led research focused on child and youth well-being, specifically in the areas of childhood obesity, early literacy and learning, mental health problems, and autism spectrum disorder (ASD).…

Omega-3 supplementation during pregnancy to improve metabolic health in the children of obese mothers

Dr Benjamin Albert University of Auckland In 2017, Cure Kids collaborated on a joint, contestable funding round with The National Science Challenge, A Better Start. The aim of the partnership was to fund high-quality, mission-led research focused on child and youth well-being, specifically in the areas of childhood obesity, early literacy and learning, mental health problems, and autism spectrum disorder…

The Healthy Mums and Babies (HUMBA) demonstration trial: Early childhood outcome study

Dr Christopher McKinlay & Dr Karaponi Okesene-Gafa University of Auckland  What is the problem and who does it affect? New Zealand has the third highest rate of obesity in children and adults among the OECD countries. If not addressed at an early stage, excessive weight gain in childhood can lead to adult obesity and increased risk of future health problems such…

The Whanau Pakari 5-year outcome project: does a multi-disciplinary treatment for obese children and adolescents lead to long-term healthy lifestyle change?

Professor Paul Hofman Liggins Institute, University of Auckland  What is the problem and who does it affect? Childhood obesity rates around the world represent a medical emergency. An estimated 85,000 children, aged 2-14 are obese nationally. The long-term implications of such figures are daunting, predisposing kids to a number of associated illnesses, including type-2 diabetes and heart disease. The New…



Recently Completed Research

Optimising babies weight through nutritional intervention in obese mothers

Professor Lesley McCowan University of Auckland What is the problem and who does it affect? More than a quarter of a million New Zealand children are currently overweight or obese. If not addressed at an early stage, the state of a child’s weight in early life, will result in health problems for them in the future such as diabetes, heart…