Pennington looking for children to participate in body shape study

Child Health
Child Health(MGN)
Published: May. 4, 2023 at 4:51 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Pennington Biomedical Research Center is trying to find infants and toddlers to participate in the Shape Up! Keiki research study.

Researchers said the children for the study must be five years old and younger. They added the purpose of the study is to create a better way to measure and describe health from body shape.

“Parents can learn more about their child’s health by joining the Shape Up! Keiki study, while also providing important information that will help us find quick ways to measure obesity status and health based on a child’s body shape,” said Dr. Steven Heymsfield, Professor and Director of the Body Composition-Metabolism Laboratory at the Pennington Biomedical. “The goal is that this study is for us to have a better understanding of which young children are at high risk of metabolic consequences of obesity.”

Information provided by Pennington Biomedical Research Center:

To qualify for this research study, your child should be 5 years of age or younger. The study is free to join, and participants will be compensated $200 for their time.

“At Pennington Biomedical our mission is to discover triggers of chronic disease through innovative research that improves human health across the lifespan,” said Dr. John Kirwan, Executive Director of Pennington Biomedical. “That starts with infants and children. If we can better measure and identify obesity risks early on, treatment and prevention measures can begin so we can improve long-term health outcomes.”

The Shape Up! Keiki research study was funded through a $3.1M grant from the National Institute of Health. Heymsfield and Pennington Biomedical are partnering with University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center researcher John Shepherd on the project.

For more information on this study or to screen online, visit, call 225-763-3000, or email

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