Education through street art, rap, breakdancing, and beats.

Current statistics indicate there are now two billion obese and overweight people in the world, and those numbers are increasing rapidly. In 2015 the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published a study reporting that 50 percent of United States adults are diabetic or have pre diabetes. Domestic statistics suggest that half of all minority youth in this country will be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in their lifetime. We need to stop this madness.

At Dunk the Junk, we implement childhood obesity reversal and prevention using the four elements of hiphop (street art, rap, breakdancing, and beats) to excite children about nutrition and exercise. As an organization taking a dynamic and progressive approach to this Non Communicable Disease (NCD) epidemic, we creatively captivate our young audience with our branding pizazz and then deliver the nutrition education to eager ears and open minds. And its working!

Dunk the Junk has been to over 30 schools and reached approximately 10,000 students over the last 4 years. Over 50,000 dollars has been given to Dunk the Junk to bring our program to schools and communities in California, Maine, Georgia, Massachusetts, Florida, New York, and even across the globe in Melbourne, Australia.

Our in school program offers at unique multi media presentation, accompanied by professional street artists, rappers, breakdancers, basketball players, and DJ’s.  We have a collection of local and nationally recognizable street art and hiphop collaborators that help communicate to the youth we are trying to educate.  Some include last year’s SPIN MAGAZINE hiphop album of year mastermind, Killer Mike (of Run the Jewels) and 3 time Estria International Graffiti Battle Champion VYAL. Basketball star Dominique Wilkins and NCAA slam dunk champion Jacob Tucker have also been involved supporting our message to our youth.

Pre and post analysis of elementary school student opinions on soda consumption show that prior to the presentation about 90 percent of students would consume soda. After the presentation less than 5 percent would consume soda. We have also shown dramatic decrease of 75 percent in chocolate milk consumption in students following the presentation, featuring this Plain Milk rap.

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In paediatric offices we’re utilizing a model designed around motivational interviewing and Dunk the Junk’s unique branding and digital health messaging, and have established an obesity prevention and treatment program that:

1. Increases followup for treatment of obesity and related morbidities
2. Decreases ‘no show’ rates for obesity followups.
3. Increases the likelihood that a provider will engage a patient in a discussion about obesity and then schedule a followup appointment.
4. Improves patient satisfaction, self esteem, and BMI.
5. Increases revenue for the health system.

We really are dunking the junk!

Check out this amazing Dunk the Junk rap from the ShortyZ, four students from Emma Hutchinson Elementary School in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, who are kicking some Anti-Junk food lyrics, and find out more about our unique approach to targeting the childhood obesity epidemic here.

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Kevin Strong is a father, a paediatrician, and the Founder and CEO of Dunk the Junk.