For Health Professionals and Researchers


The Reach In! Reach Out! Children's Diabetes Prevention Program at the University of Chicago conducts community-based translation research on obesity and risk of type 2 diabetes in youth. Traditionally considered an “adult” disease, type 2 diabetes is becoming more prevalent among children and adolescents as rates of obesity steadily rise. Obesity and type 2 diabetes are both disproportionately found among minority youth in the U.S.: CDC

REACH-OUT programs were conceived and implemented by a multidisciplinary team at the University of Chicago in conjunction with community partners. Meet the team!

Development of the Reach In! Reach Out! project began with review of the literature on childhood obesity and diabetes, and a synthesis of various behavior changes theories:

Burnet DL, Plaut A, Courtney R, Chin M.  Preventing type 2 diabetes in minority youth: A practical model and empirical evidence.  Diabetes Educator 28:779-95, 2002.

Formative Research: We conducted focus groups and interviews with community leaders and families from Chicago's South Side to gain understanding of current practices and challenges regarding healthy nutrition and exercise on Chicago's South Side

Burnet DL, Plaut A, Ossowski K, Ahmad A, Quinn MT, Radovick S, Gorawara-Bhat R, Chin M.  Community and family perspectives on addressing overweight in urban African American youth.  Journal of General Internal Medicine 2008;23:175-9.

Pilot Study and R-18 Translation Study:

Reach In! Reach Out! is a community-based, family oriented program to decrease overweight and risk of type-2 diabetes among African-American youth ages 9-12. Families meet in a group setting to work on developing healthy nutrition and exercise behaviors. This study follows outcomes for children and their parents, including body habitus, glucose tolerance, and nutrition and exercise behaviors, through periodic visits to the General Clinical Research Center. The pilot phase included 29 families who participated for two years. Currently, a five year translation study of the Reach In! Reach Out! programs is underway, with 160 families expected to participate.

Research Support:

R18 DK62992-01A2 (Reach Out: Chicago Children’s Diabetes Prevention Project)
UL1 RRO24999 (University of Chicago Clinical and Translation Science Award)
P60 DK 20595 (University of Chicago Diabetes Research and Training Center)

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