OLIVIE BABY/KIDS TIPS:
Sleeping children earlier to prevent obesity?
An American study shows that advancing children's bedtime can help them not gain too much weight.
Fast food, TV and soft drinks are not the only factors to be blamed when it comes to childhood obesity, experts note. The lack of sleep is also to be taken into account, as shown by the results of this study.
Researchers at Temple University in Philadelphia used 37 children between the ages of eight and eleven, more than a quarter of whom were overweight or obese. During the first week of study, the children slept as usual. During the second week, the sleep periods of some were lengthened or shortened, and during the third week these durations were reversed.
The results showed that when babies slept longer, they ate about 134 fewer calories a day and lost an average of 250 grams in three weeks.
"The findings of this study show that improving children's nocturnal sleep could have important effects on the prevention and treatment of obesity," noted study director Chantelle Hart of the Temple. University of Philadelphia. And to conclude, "the potential role of sleep should be examined in more depth."
Their results appeared in the digital version of the journal Pediatrics on November 4th.
Another study, conducted on adults, showed a few months ago that lack of sleep could cause changes in brain activity and lead to cravings for more fatty and sugary foods. This research was published in Nature Communications.
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