The Child Health Initiative for Lifelong Eating and Exercise (CHILE) Plus program is the dissemination of the original CHILE intervention. CHILE Plus continues as an evidence-based, multidisciplinary nutrition education and obesity prevention program among American Indian and Hispanic children enrolled in Head Start programs across rural New Mexico. CHILE Plus is behaviorally-focused and is based on the socioecological model. CHILE Plus is funded by the New Mexico Human Services Department as a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) project. The purpose of SNAP-Ed is to improve the likelihood that SNAP-eligible individuals and families will make healthy food choices within a limited budget and choose physically active lifestyles consistent with the current Dietary Guidelines for Americans and USDA food guidance.

The aims of CHILE Plus are that Head Start children and their families will:

  • Eat more fruits and vegetables; choose whole grains and low-fat dairy products; and drink more water
  • Eat fewer high-fat foods and drink fewer sugar-sweetened beverages
  • Learn how to serve and choose foods in age-appropriate portion sizes
  • Spend at least 30 minutes every day engaged in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity
  • Spend no more than two hours per day being sedentary

CHILE Plus intervention includes the following:

  • CHILE Nutrition and Physical Activity classroom curriculum for Head Start children
  • Provides repeated opportunities to try new foods and to increase physical activity throughout the school day
  • CHILE Plus professional development delivered to Head Start teachers, food service staff, coordinators and administrators. Content includes healthy eating, active living, and family engagement strategies
  • CHILE Plus Family Engagement Activities, including CHILE Plus messaging at home visits, in parent meetings, and through CHILE Plus Family Event activities. Activities are conducted by both CHILE Plus staff and Head Start staff
  • Grocery store program to promote healthier food and beverage options in select rural communities
  • Health Care and Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Program providers

Previous Principal Investigator: Patricia C. Keane, MS, RD 2011 - 2019;

Current Principal Investigator: Nan Zeng, Ph.D. 2020-

Source of Funding: New Mexico Human Services Department

This project is funded through the USDA, and is subject to The USDA Nondiscrimination Statement.


Browse the PRC CHILE Plus Collections:

Module 1 Family Engagement Activities

Module 1 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 2 Family Engagement Activities

Module 2 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 3 Family Engagement Activities

Module 3 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 4 Family Engagement Activities

Module 4 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 5 Family Engagement Activities

Module 5 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 6 Family Engagement Activities

Module 6 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 7 Family Engagement Activities

Module 7 Nutrition Curriculum

Module 8 Family Engagement Activities

Module 8 Nutrition Curriculum

Physical Activity Curriculum