“A $2 million USDA research grant to develop a new technology to measure children’s food consumption and nutrient analysis” The United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) awarded the Social and Health Research Center a $2 million research grant to develop an innovative technology to measure children’s dietary intake using cameras. The proposed instrument is the Digital Food Imaging Analysis technique (DFIA). DFIA will provide the most comprehensive and quantitative estimation of children’s food consumption and nutrient analysis. DFIA will be able to assess the effectiveness of school and community health programs designed to prevent childhood obesity.

The study involves three elementary schools in the San Antonio Independent School District and two elementary schools in the Edgewood Independent School District. The USDA grant starts with technology development August 2011, and runs through the spring of January 2015.

The Baptist Health System is collaborating with The Social and Health Research Center to combine its efforts to reduce the risk of student’s developing type 2 diabetes and obesity. The study targets 2nd grade students, faculty/staff, food service workers, and parents from five elementary schools throughout the San Antonio area. The study follows students for a three year term and ends in summer 2012.

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