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New Online Toolkit Helps Researchers and Practitioners Develop Equity-Oriented Obesity Prevention Strategies

RALEIGH, N.C. (April 2, 2024) — Leslie J. Ansley, Director of Marketing and Communications, Council on Black Health

The Council on Black Health is excited to announce the launch of our Getting to Equity in Obesity Prevention Toolkit (GTE Toolkit). This “how-to” toolkit stresses equity thinking in planning health research, policies, and programs.  

The toolkit is designed for academic and community-based researchers, public health practitioners, healthcare providers, and administrators. This framework debuted in 2017 in a National Academy of Medicine Perspective written by Dr. Shiriki Kumanyika, Founding Chair of the Council on Black Health. Later, in 2019, Dr. Kumanyika provided more details about the framework in a formal essay. The essay is in the American Journal of Public Health:

Our goal is to make the concept of health equity as concrete and actionable as possible when applied to efforts to foster healthy eating, active living, and healthy weight.

“We know we are working to overcome the prevailing forces in our society that make it much easier to be unhealthy than healthy, a task that is especially daunting for communities with limited social and economic resources. We know what needs to be done, but the challenge is how to get there,” said Dr. Kumanyika. That is where the GTE Toolkit comes in: “From explanations of fundamental health equity principles to step-by-step guidance and case studies as examples, we believe this platform has the potential to motivate and support efforts to achieve greater equity impact of our combined efforts,” she said. 

“With this toolkit, we emphasize the need to incorporate equity considerations in policy, systems, and environmental change approaches,” said Tiffany Eaton, the Council’s Associate Director of Practice and Research, Women’s Health. “Applying a health equity lens throughout the planning, implementation, and evaluation processes of programs and policies is critical for addressing obesity disparities.” 

“There is no one-size-fits-all strategy for the continuing obesity crisis,” said Dr. Melicia Whitt-Glover, Executive Director of the Council on Black Health. “Identifying key areas for obesity prevention is crucial. Recognizing social and economic inequities is vital for effective interventions. Public health focuses on community health improvement. Collaboration across sectors addresses health determinants effectively. The foundation is set for an equity-focused obesity plan.” 

About the Council on Black Health

A just and fair society values every person and their health. At the Council on Black Health (CBH), we align our partners around health equity, integrating research, policy, and practice. We are a national research and action network that integrates global perspectives, data, research, and lived experience to create actionable strategies for what’s possible: That one day, all Black people will live safe, healthy, and happy lives.

The Council is also a national resource partner of Washington University in St. Louis’ Center for Diabetes Translation Research. The National Resource Core Solutions to Diabetes in Black Americans is made possible through this collaboration.