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Lack of Sleep Increases Obesity and Body Fat in Children

Pediatrics has published a large study linking reduced sleep and childhood obesity.  The children who consistently received less than the recommended hours of sleep during infancy and early childhood had increases in both obesity and in adiposity or overall body fat at age 7. Insufficient sleep was defined as less than 12 hours per day from […]

Factors in the Home that Reduce Childhood Obesity

JAMA Pediatrics published research on in home interventions to reduce childhood obesity.  The children in the intervention group participated in a program called “Healthy Home Healthy Habits”.  The parents were not told that it was to reduce the risk of the children becoming overweight. The interventions consisted of encouraging: regular family meals together adequate sleep for […]


Just 7 Minutes a Day…

Recent research published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine looked at the physical activity levels of 600 Canadian children ages 9-17.  The research indicated that children needed at least 7 minutes per day of vigorous physical activity to prevent weight gain and obesity. The data indicated that the children spent 70% of their […]


Weight and Gross Motor Skills

Pediatric Physical Therapy published research on weight and gross motor skill development in young children.  Body mass index and gross motor skill level was determined for 4650 kindergarteners.  The results indicated that children with obesity exhibited decreased motor skills compared to their peers especially with respect to locomotor and balance skills. Reference: Roberts, Dawn; Veneri, Diana; […]


BMI and Gross Motor Skills

Pediatric Physical Therapy published research on the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and gross motor skill level in children. Fifty typically developing 3-5 year old children were evaluated with the Peabody Developmental Motor Scales. Of those 50 children, 24% were overweight/obese with 54% scoring below average on the PDMS in that group. Whereas only […]

Obesity, Gait Patterns and Vision

Gait and Posture published research comparing the walking patterns of normal weight children versus obese children. Gait analysis was performed on 32 children in light and dark conditions. Both groups of children exhibited changes in their walking patterns in the dark conditions. Although in the dark conditions, the obese group spent more time in the […]

Reading Changes Body Mass Index in Girls

This study in Pediatrics is very creative and intriguing. Thirty one of 81 girls, ages 9-13, were randomly assigned to read an intervention novel which was a story about an overweight girl who discovers improved health and self worth. Thirty three girls read a control novel and 17 girls read no novel. Follow up occurred […]


Higher Academic Scores for Physically Fit Children

The New York City Department of Health recently reviewed academic and fitness records of public school children in Grades K-8. This records review revealed the following:1. More than 20% of the students were obese and 18% are overweight totaling 38% of all students.2. Boys were more likely to be obese than girls (except among black […]


Musculoskeletal Problems in Obese Children

Annals of Family Medicine published research on self reported musculoskeletal problems in obese and overweight children. They studied 2459 children ages 2-11 years old of which 4.1% were overweight or obese. The overweight and obese children self reported significantly more musculoskeletal problems than normal weight peers. The musculoskeletal problems included back/neck pain and lower extremity […]

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Obesity and Motor Skills

Here is another interesting topic to me. Just read some research from 2008 Neuroscience Letters indicating that obese and overweight children had decreased fine motor control when compared to normal weight peers. Fine motor skills were decreased more when postural challenges were present (standing on balance beam while doing peg activity. In addition, Adapted Physical […]