Children Gain Weight Faster During Summer Break Than In School Years: Study

Posted: Nov 2 2016, 12:35pm CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

 

Children Gain Weight Faster During Summer Break than in School Years: Study .
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The prevelance of obesity and overweight increases during summer vacation than during kindergarten and first-grade school years

While summer break brings lots of happiness and joy for kids, it also increases their chances of being obese and overweight.

According to a new research, kids gain more weight during summer break than during school years. To arrive at the conclusion, researchers followed more than 18,000 children from the start of their kindergarten through the end of their second grade, from 2010 to 2013. 

Researchers found that kids put on weight many times during the study period, but all of these instances took place during summer vacations, not during their school years. Overall, the prevalence of obesity increased from 8.9 percent to 11.5 percent and the prevalence overweight increased from 23.3 percent to 28.7 percent over that period.

The findings also reflect that the epidemic of childhood obesity is not entirely driven by eating sweets and other high-caloric food. Lack of running around and laziness is also fueling the crises and creating hurdles in preventing and controlling childhood obesity.

“Educators have long worried that summer break leads to knowledge loss and now we know that it is also a time of excessive weight gain for our young school children,” said study co-author, Paul von Hippel from LBJ School of Public Affairs at University of Texas, Austin.

“Our findings raise questions for parents and policymakers about how to help children adopt healthy behaviors during the long summer vacation to stop unhealthy weight gain. Our results also suggest that we cannot reverse the obesity epidemic if we focus on what children are doing and eating while they are in school.”

Researchers suggest that we should try to change children’s behavior not only when they are in school but also when they had to stay at home for a long period of time and help them adopt healthy habits. Previous researches suggest that kids spend more time on video games and other screens in summer vacations.  Limiting time with electronic screens – television, computer and tablets and promoting outdoor activities can prevent kids gaining too much weight and can also help reduce the risk of obesity in early childhood.

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Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.

 

 

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