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UB childhood obesity expert will share new approaches and solutions in free, public lecture

by jmaloni

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Thu, Sep 19th 2013 03:30 pm

In observance of September as National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, internationally known childhood obesity expert Leonard H. Epstein, Ph.D., SUNY distinguished professor at the University at Buffalo, will give a free talk on the subject. The lecture is open to the public and health care providers.

The talk, "Lead Foot and Worn Brakes: Navigating the Roads to Repair Childhood Obesity," will be held Sept. 23 from 7-8 p.m. in Butler Auditorium, 150 Farber Hall on the UB South Campus.

The title refers to some of the newest research on obesity that is being conducted by Epstein at UB and other researchers around the nation.

"Fighting obesity is a lot more complicated than 'eat less, exercise more,' " Epstein said. "The lead foot in the title refers to the strong motivation to eat, while the worn brake refers to the fact that many obese people do not have good self-control to regulate their motivation to eat."

Epstein's work currently focuses on what motivates people to eat more than they need and what psychological tools can help people to learn how to better regulate those impulses to eat.

"We have multiple new studies going on at UB that can help participants eat more healthfully," he said. "People attending the lecture will have the opportunity to learn from our research findings and to consider joining one of our studies."

Epstein, a faculty member in the UB department of pediatrics in the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, will use video clips from popular movies and TV shows to illustrate in an entertaining way some of the issues involved in the tension between the urge to overeat and the desire to lose weight. He also will take questions from the audience.

He noted, "Childhood obesity is a major public health problem. This generation of children may be the first to not outlive their parents due to childhood obesity."

For more information, call 716-829-6698 or email [email protected].

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