Reducing Childhood Obesity Across America, One Community at a Time
Christina Economos, PhD
Professor; New Balance Chair in Childhood Nutrition, Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy and Medical School at Tufts University; Co-Founder and Director of ChildObesity180
Christina Economos, PhD, is a Professor and the New Balance Chair in Childhood Nutrition at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy and Medical School at Tufts University. She is also the co-Founder and Director of ChildObesity180, a unique organization that brings together leaders from diverse disciplines to generate urgency, and find solutions to the childhood obesity epidemic. ChildObesity180 merges the best in nutrition and public health research and practice with the expertise and experience of business, government, and nonprofit leaders. When these perspectives come together, a creative tension exists that balances the academic focus on discovering what works and why, with the entrepreneurial perspective that quick action is needed.
As the principal investigator of large-scale research studies, Dr. Economos’ goal is to inspire behavior, policy, and environmental change to reduce obesity and improve the health of America’s children. She has authored more than 120 scientific publications. At ChildObesity180 she develops, implements, evaluates, and scales high-impact obesity prevention initiatives. She led the Shape Up Somerville study demonstrating that it is possible to reduce excess weight gain in children through multiple leverage points within an entire community. Dr. Economos’ Live Well study was a preventive intervention developed with active input from community partners to moderate or reduce weight gain among new immigrant women and their children. In partnership with Save the Children, she led the CHANGE study, which was designed to improve physical activity and nutrition behaviors in rural communities.
Dr. Economos is involved in national obesity and public health activities and has served on four Institute of Medicine committees including the Roundtable on Obesity Solutions and the Committee on an Evidence Framework for Obesity Prevention Decision-Making. In addition, she serves on the American Heart Association’s Nutrition Council on Lifestyle and Cardiometabolic Health. Dr. Economos received a Bachelor of Science from Boston University, a Master of Science in Applied Physiology and Nutrition from Columbia University and a doctorate in Nutritional Biochemistry from Tufts University.