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Grant Details

Grant Number: 5R01CA140319-03 Interpret this number
Primary Investigator: Wen, Ming
Organization: University Of Utah
Project Title: Neighborhood Built and Social Environment and Physical Activity and Weight Status
Fiscal Year: 2012
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Abstract

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Overweight and obesity are risk factors for a range of health problems. The prevalence of overweight and obesity has been steadily rising among every segment of the U.S. population. In searching for factors driving the obesity epidemic, the overweight/obesity research is now focused on the balance between diet and physical activity (PA). To address the obesity epidemic, researchers have begun to explore the wider contextual determinants of obesity-related outcomes in hope of identifying new approaches to promoting PA and curbing the rising tide of obesity. This study attempts to contribute to the literature by examining the extent to which neighborhood built environments and socio-demographic contexts influence individual PA and weight status in the United States. To guide this investigation, we employ the social cognitive theory and ecological models and use multiple data sources including the 2000 Census data, GIS-based data from various sources, other place-based aggregate data, and continuous NHANES from 1999 to 2008. We ask: 1) How do contextual built environmental and socio-demographic factors affect objectively and subjectively measured PA and weight status over and above individual characteristics? 2) What are the interacting and mediating effects among contextual built environmental and socio-demographic factors in their impacts on PA and weight status? Are these observed contextual effects partly mediated by individual psychosocial pathways? 3) How do neighborhood factors interact with individual factors to impact PA and weight status? 4) How are the above relationships sensitive to geographic aggregation methods of local neighborhoods? 5) How does spatial dependency among local neighborhoods affect the observed patterns produced from the above analysis? This project goes beyond current research in five ways. First, it examines a wider range of place-based contextual features at both tract- and county-levels. Second, it is a national study covering the entire U.S. Third, it examines both self-reports and objective assessments of PA and weight status. Fourth, it provides a unique opportunity to examine interactions across a number of levels (e.g., individual- neighborhood, neighborhood-county). Fifth, it tests under-studied hypotheses in this literature such as the Modifiable Areal Unit Problem and the spatial dependency issues. This project combines perspectives from sociology, urban planning, geography, and spatial epidemiology; it bridges these disciplines to formulate research that addresses a set of questions vital to research on environmental determinants of PA and weight status. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: This study examines how geographic and contextual factors at census tract level and county level are associated with individual-level physical activity and body weight in a national sample. Both the built environments and socio-demographic contexts will be considered. Given the rising tide of the obesity epidemic in the United States, research, strategies and programs for weight maintenance and weight reduction have become a high public health priority in the recent decade.

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Publications

An ecological analysis of environmental correlates of active commuting in urban U.S.
Authors: Fan JX, Wen M, Kowaleski-Jones L
Source: Health Place, 2014 Nov;30, p. 242-50.
EPub date: 2014 Oct 24.
PMID: 25460907
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Rural-urban differences in objective and subjective measures of physical activity: findings from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2003-2006.
Authors: Fan JX, Wen M, Kowaleski-Jones L
Source: Prev Chronic Dis, 2014 Aug 21;11, p. E141.
EPub date: 2014 Aug 21.
PMID: 25144676
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Sociodemographic and Environmental Correlates of Active Commuting in Rural America.
Authors: Fan JX, Wen M, Kowaleski-Jones L
Source: J Rural Health, 2014 Jul 27;null, p. null.
EPub date: 2014 Jul 27.
PMID: 25066252
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Correlates of Leisure-Time Physical Activity Participation Among Latino Children and Adolescents with Acanthosis Nigricans.
Authors: Wen M, Su D
Source: J Immigr Minor Health, 2014 Feb 6;null, p. null.
EPub date: 2014 Feb 6.
PMID: 24500001
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Residential racial composition and black-white obesity risks: differential effects of neighborhood social and built environment.
Authors: Li K, Wen M, Henry KA
Source: Int J Environ Res Public Health, 2014 Jan 2;11(1), p. 626-42.
EPub date: 2014 Jan 2.
PMID: 24452257
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Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Leisure-time Physical Activity in California: Patterns and Mechanisms.
Authors: Li K, Wen M
Source: Race Soc Probl, 2013 Sep 1;5(3), p. 147-156.
PMID: 24069092
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Ethnic-immigrant disparities in total and abdominal obesity in the US.
Authors: Wen M, Kowaleski-Jones L, Fan JX
Source: Am J Health Behav, 2013 Nov;37(6), p. 807-18.
PMID: 24001630
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Walking or dancing: patterns of physical activity by cross-sectional age among U.S. women.
Authors: Fan JX, Kowaleski-Jones L, Wen M
Source: J Aging Health, 2013 Oct;25(7), p. 1182-203.
EPub date: 2013 Jul 17.
PMID: 23867628
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Population-Adjusted Street Connectivity, Urbanicity and Risk of Obesity in the U.S.
Authors: Wang F, Wen M, Xu Y
Source: Appl Geogr, 2013 Jul;41, p. 1-14.
PMID: 23667278
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Neighborhood socioeconomic status and BMI differences by immigrant and legal status: evidence from Utah.
Authors: Wen M, Maloney TN
Source: Econ Hum Biol, 2014 Jan;12, p. 120-31.
EPub date: 2013 Apr 5.
PMID: 23623001
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Community and child energy balance: differential associations between neighborhood environment and overweight risk by gender.
Authors: Kowaleski-Jones L, Wen M
Source: Int J Environ Health Res, 2013;23(5), p. 434-45.
EPub date: 2013 Apr 17.
PMID: 23594218
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Physical activity and mortality among middle-aged and older adults in the United States.
Authors: Wen M, Li L, Su D
Source: J Phys Act Health, 2014 Feb;11(2), p. 303-12.
EPub date: 2013 Jan 30.
PMID: 23363569
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Measurement, Optimization, and Impact of Health Care Accessibility: A Methodological Review.
Authors: Wang F
Source: Ann Assoc Am Geogr, 2012;102(5), p. 1104-1112.
EPub date: 2012 Mar 27.
PMID: 23335813
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Spatial disparities in the distribution of parks and green spaces in the USA.
Authors: Wen M, Zhang X, Harris CD, Holt JB, Croft JB
Source: Ann Behav Med, 2013 Feb;45 Suppl 1, p. S18-27.
PMID: 23334758
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The built environment and risk of obesity in the United States: racial-ethnic disparities.
Authors: Wen M, Kowaleski-Jones L
Source: Health Place, 2012 Nov;18(6), p. 1314-22.
EPub date: 2012 Sep 18.
PMID: 23099113
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Sex and ethnic differences in validity of self-reported adult height, weight and body mass index.
Authors: Wen M, Kowaleski-Jones L
Source: Ethn Dis, 2012 Winter;22(1), p. 72-8.
PMID: 22774312
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Religiousness, Physical Activity and Obesity among Older Cancer Survivors: Results from the Health and Retirement Study 2000-2010.
Authors: Nathenson SL, Wen M
Source: Int J Religion Spiritual Soc, 2012;2(3), p. 129-144.
PMID: 25374762
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Modeling spatial accessibility to parks: a national study.
Authors: Zhang X, Lu H, Holt JB
Source: Int J Health Geogr, 2011 May 9;10, p. 31.
EPub date: 2011 May 9.
PMID: 21554690
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Latino residential isolation and the risk of obesity in Utah: the role of neighborhood socioeconomic, built-environmental, and subcultural context.
Authors: Wen M, Maloney TN
Source: J Immigr Minor Health, 2011 Dec;13(6), p. 1134-41.
PMID: 21274631
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