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Soda consumption, screen time, team sports at school influence students' weight
Date:10/29/2012

Soda consumption, TV and video/computer games, and the frequency of meals heavily influenced students' weight in an Indiana University study that examined the impact of a school-based obesity intervention program over an 18-month period.

More soda consumption and screen time meant students were more likely to be overweight or to gain weight. The more frequently students ate meals each day, the less likely they were to stay overweight or gain weight during the study, which examined the Healthy, Energetic, Ready, Outstanding, Enthusiastic Schools program.

Dong-Chul Seo, associate professor in the IU School of Public Health-Bloomington, said participation in team sports also contributed to students' ability to achieve a healthy weight.

"Schools and families may be able to successfully focus on these modifiable risk factors, decreasing the burden of childhood obesity," he said.

HEROES, implemented by schools in southern Indiana, northwestern Kentucky and southeastern Illinois, is sponsored by the Welborn Baptist Foundation and based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Coordinated School Health Model. HEROES is intended to enhance schoolwide wellness culture through changes in physical education, nutrition, the physical environment, health promotion efforts for school staff and family, and community involvement. Researchers from IU's School of Public Health-Bloomington and the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community have been evaluating the HEROES initiative for the past four years.

"Predictors for Persistent Overweight, Deteriorated Weight and Improved Weight Status During 18 Months in a School-Based Longitudinal Cohort" involved 5,309 students at 11 schools.

Seo said the findings confirm the connection between higher levels of soda consumption and persistent overweight and deteriorating weight status, and they support the recent and controversial New York City ban on sales of supersi
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Contact: Dong-Chul Seo
seo@indiana.edu
812-855-9379
Indiana University
Source:Eurekalert  

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