Current Projects

metabolic-control-photoThe Stress in Obese Adolescents and their Resilience (SOAR) Study
Poor metabolic control puts teens with obesity at risk for a number of serious health complications, and significantly increases health care costs. Not all youth with obesity develop metabolic complications. Dr. Idia Thurston and Dr. Kathryn Howell currently have a grant under review for a study examining differences in stress and resilience among youth with and without obesity-related metabolic complications, in order to develop effective strategies for promoting metabolic health.




PaTH Kids Studychildren
Dr. Idia Thurston and Dr. Kathryn Howell currently have a grant under review for this study which will examine the following: relationship between maternal SAVA and youth resilience, the qualitative relationship between maternal SAVA and resilience in youth, and whether maternal mental and physical health are moderators of the relationship between maternal SAVA and youth resilience.





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Weight Reporting from Adolescents’ Perspective (WRAP)
Do younger individuals identify their height and weight correctly and how do gender and culture play a role? This study intends to assess how accurately adolescents and young adults identify their height and weight and how culture and other health-related factors play a role.





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Parenting through Hardships (PaTH)
Adversity may affect a person’s life, but does it affect parenting? And if so, how? The PaTH study was conducted to explore how experiences of adversity in women primary caregivers of children might affect parenting. In collaboration with Dr. Kathryn Howell, PaTH examined several types of adversity experienced by caregivers, including: relationship violence, risky sexual behaviors, substance use, and challenges associated with mental health and social support.



adolescentsBehaviors, Relationships, and Identity Development (BRAID) 
What are the makings of a person’s identity and how do individuals see themselves? The BRAID study sets out to answer these questions by learning how people think about themselves and what factors contribute to one’s sense of identity. This study is being conducted by Ph.D. student Kristina Decker under the supervision of the CHANGE lab’s director, Dr. Idia Thurston.




The Identity Exploration Study (TIES)
What kinds of microaggressions do multi-racial individuals experience? What factors are associated with resilience in the context of microaggressions? Dr. Idia Thurston and Dr. Laura Marks are leading this study examining the relationships between racial/ethnic identity, microaggressions, and resilience among adolescents and adults aged 18-25 years old.




Emotional Overeating Intervention (EOI) eoi-picture
Food can be a source of comfort, and sometimes people overeat as a way to way to feel better or deal with difficult feelings. These culturally-responsive outpatient Dialectical Behavior Therapy skills groups seek to help teens reach their goals of decreasing overeating behaviors by replacing with more skillful behaviors. CHANGE Lab Ph.D. student Rebecca Kamody is assessing the feasibility, acceptability and preliminary efficacy of these groups, in collaboration with Dr. Idia Thurston and Dr. Thomaseo Burton through the Le Bonheur Health Lifestyle Clinic.