Navigation Links
Key to More Active, Slimmer Kids: Friends
Date:5/28/2012

By Randy Dotinga
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 28 (HealthDay News) -- Could your young child be putting on excess pounds because her friends sit around? A small study suggests it's possible: Kids seemed to become more active in after-school programs if they hung out with active kids, and the reverse was true, too.

The findings don't prove that friends directly affect how active kids are, and it's not clear whether there's enough of an impact to make a difference in obesity or activity levels throughout the day.

Still, the research raises questions about whether chubbier kids can be influenced by more active peers, said study co-author Eric Tesdahl, a graduate student in Vanderbilt University's department of human and organizational development. Perhaps, he said, less-active kids could be grouped with more-active ones.

"There's a pretty good chance that you could make some significant changes based on the social-influence factor alone," Tesdahl said. This is especially true, he said, since the research suggests kids don't simply flock to other kids who are like them -- active or non-active -- but instead are influenced by their peers.

In the study, researchers analyzed 81 kids aged 5 to 12 in after-school programs. Their average age was 8 and most were black or Latino. The researchers followed them over three months, asked them about their friends and tracked their activity levels with devices called accelerometers. They only wore the devices during the after-school programs, which lasted for three hours a day.

The kids appeared to adjust their activity levels to those closest to them. While other research has suggested that kids are drawn to those who are most similar to them in terms of obesity -- "obese kids tend to befriend obese kids," as Tesdahl put it -- this study didn't show that.

"It was much more likely for a child to adjust their activity level to that of their friends than it was for them to not adjust or to go in the opposite direction," Tesdahl said.

The study found that children consistently increased their activity levels by 10 percent to be more in line with their peers.

Ray Browning, an assistant professor at Colorado State University's department of health and exercise science, praised the study and said it helps clarify "how relationships affect health-related behavior" even though "it is easy to look at a study like this and say 'duh.'"

However, he said, the study only looks at a few hours of the day. In the big picture, he said, it's "well-established" that peers make a major difference in teenagers when it comes to things like using drugs. But the influence of other kids is not as clear in younger kids.

To make things more complicated, "the friendships of young children are fairly dynamic," he said. "They're forming and reforming with some relatively high frequency."

By contrast, he said, "we tend to think of obesity as more of a chronic condition that we acquire over time. When the friendships are coming and going, you could make the argument that it may have less of an impact."

The study appears in the June issue of the journal Pediatrics, published online May 28.

More information:

For more on childhood obesity, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SOURCES: Eric Tesdahl, M.A., graduate student, department of human and organizational development, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn.; Ray Browning, Ph.D., assistant professor, department of health and exercise science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins; June 2012 Pediatrics


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Too Many Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients Inactive, Study Finds
2. 15 years after ACL knee reconstruction, 84 percent of male patients still highly active, study says
3. Family Meals Keep Kids Slimmer, Healthier, Study Finds
4. Breast-Feeding Helps Mom Stay Slimmer Later in Life
5. When to have kids: A complex question for hazel dormice
6. Codeine After Surgery Could Endanger Certain Kids: Study
7. Measles Vaccines Wont Raise Seizure Risk in Young Kids: Study
8. Genes Play a Role in Drug Abuse Risk Among Adopted Kids: Study
9. Safety-First Playgrounds Linked to Bored, Inactive Kids: Study
10. Some Asthma Drugs Raise Risk of Complications, Especially in Kids: Study
11. Milk better than water to rehydrate kids: McMaster study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Key to More Active, Slimmer Kids: Friends
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... 25, 2017 , ... As President Trump challenges the status ... his administration could impact the employee benefits industry. James Slotnick, AVP, Government Relations, ... to make it through Congress. His discussion will focus on the current state ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... ... Lake Park Dental is now accepting new patients with crooked teeth who ... the help of this highly-effective, yet convenient system, patients can straighten their teeth and ... pain. , Drs. Sarah Jockin, Nicole Morganti, Sara Spear and Elizabeth Dy, of ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... April 25, 2017 , ... ... the way in unveiling cutting-edge birth defects research related to Zika virus during ... the world’s premier society for this important science. , The Teratology ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... ... Chaudhary, MD is committed to providing the highest quality of spine care to all his ... with all my patients to alleviate possible future issues. I am pleased to have you ... and my trained staff will assist you in any way possible.” , Dr. Saad Chaudhary ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... Hollywood, Fl (PRWEB) , ... April 25, 2017 , ... ... than Memorial Regional Hospital, according to a special report in the May issue of ... Hospital its highest quality ranking for results achieved during and after coronary bypass ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/21/2017)... 21, 2017 Halo Labs announces the launch ... analysis system called the Horizon at PEGS 2017 in ... new system analyzes sub visible particulate matter in biopharmaceutical ... screening as early as candidate selection and pre-formulation. ... contract research organization Elion Labs for system ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... April 20, 2017 Research and ... Biosimilar Pipeline and Market Prospects: Addressing Production Complexities Through ... their offering. ... "Global Biosimilar Pipeline and Market Prospects: Overcoming Production ... an in-depth assessment of the current trends in the ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... Inc ., a digital health company focused on modernizing and ... $25 million in Series B funding led by Qiming US ... Seattle that is part of a broader family ... included participation from SR One , who led ZappRx,s ... Google Ventures). As part of the financing, Mark McDade ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: