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Geoffrey M. Hudson and Kyle Sprow

and microbial infections. 4 – 8 In contrast, people who are sedentary and obese have increased mortality and hospitalizations from such infections. 5 , 9 – 12 Obesity was recently linked to an increased risk of severe (and often fatal) complications from influenza A virus H1N1 infection during the

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Elin Ekblom-Bak, Örjan Ekblom, Gunnar Andersson, Peter Wallin and Björn Ekblom

general, 3 , 4 childhood and adolescence PA might also have important beneficial effects in different domains, for example, bone density. 5 With the alarming reports of increasing childhood/adolescent obesity and declining fitness levels, 6 , 7 studies on the immediate effects on health and disease in

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Juana Willumsen and Fiona Bull

Physical inactivity has been identified as a leading risk factor for global mortality and a contributor to the increase in overweight and obesity. Although we know that more than 28% of adults 1 and 80% of adolescents are not sufficiently physically active, 2 there are currently no comparable

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Nisha Botchwey, Myron F. Floyd, Keshia Pollack Porter, Carmen L. Cutter, Chad Spoon, Tom L. Schmid, Terry L. Conway, J. Aaron Hipp, Anna J. Kim, M. Renee Umstattd Meyer, Amanda L. Walker, Tina J. Kauh and Jim F. Sallis

In the United States, nearly 1 in 3 young people is overweight or obese. Lower-income toddlers, children, and adolescents in historically underserved populations—African American, American Indian, Latino-Hispanic, and subpopulations of Asian Americans and Pacific Islander cultures—are at highest

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Alon Eliakim, Bareket Falk, Neil Armstrong, Fátima Baptista, David G. Behm, Nitzan Dror, Avery D. Faigenbaum, Kathleen F. Janz, Jaak Jürimäe, Amanda L. McGowan, Dan Nemet, Paolo T. Pianosi, Matthew B. Pontifex, Shlomit Radom-Aizik, Thomas Rowland and Alex V. Rowlands

present, modern-day youth are less active, more obese, and weaker than past generations, and it is likely that the economic burden of managing health complications arising from already existing disease will continue ( 125 , 165 ). A take home message is that the handgrip strength or standing long jump has

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Heidi J. Syväoja, Anna Kankaanpää, Jouni Kallio, Harto Hakonen, Janne Kulmala, Charles H. Hillman, Anu-Katriina Pesonen and Tuija H. Tammelin

Globally, children spend extensive amounts of time being sedentary, 1 and only one-third of children are physically active enough to gain health benefits. 2 Accompanying these trends, the rates of childhood overweight and obesity, along with poor fitness, are escalating. 3 , 4 These trends have

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Emmanuel Gomes Ciolac, José Messias Rodrigues da Silva and Rodolfo Paula Vieira

, age-related immunomodulation alterations, and inflammation; and (3) whether exercise may really counteract the hypothesized feedback mechanism. Exercise as an Immunomodulator in Metabolic Diseases Metabolic diseases, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), are increasingly prevalent

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Ignacio Perez-Pozuelo, Thomas White, Kate Westgate, Katrien Wijndaele, Nicholas J. Wareham and Soren Brage

, designed to identify the behavioral, environmental, and genetic causes of obesity and type-2 diabetes. As previously described in detail, participants attended one of three clinical research facilities in the region surrounding Cambridge, UK, and completed a series of physical assessments and

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Carole V. Harris, Andrew S. Bradlyn, Nancy O. Tompkins, Melanie B. Purkey, Keri A. Kennedy and George A. Kelley

Background:

The West Virginia Healthy Lifestyles Act contained 5 school-based mandates intended to reduce childhood obesity. These addressed the sale of healthy beverages, physical education time, fitness assessment, health education and assessment, and Body Mass Index measurement. This article describes the processes and methods used to evaluate efforts to implement the legislation.

Methods:

University researchers and state public health and education staff formed the collaborative evaluation team. To assess perceptions and practices, surveys were completed with school personnel (53 superintendents, 586 principals, 398 physical education teachers, 214 nurses) and telephone interviews were conducted with a multistage, stratified sample of 1500 parents and 420 students statewide. Healthcare providers (N = 122) were surveyed regarding current child weight practices and interactions with families. Statewide data reflecting fitness, physical education plans, local wellness policies, and health knowledge were included in the evaluation.

Results:

The evaluation was facilitated by state officials and agencies, resulting in good access to survey groups and high survey response rates for school personnel (57% to 95% response rates); a substantially lower response rate was obtained for healthcare providers (22%).

Conclusions:

Collaborative design and implementation was a key factor in the successful conduct of this obesity policy evaluation.

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Silvia A. González, Olga L. Sarmiento, Daniel D. Cohen, Diana M. Camargo, Jorge E. Correa, Diana C. Páez and Robinson Ramírez-Vélez

Background:

Physical activity (PA) is central to the global agenda for the prevention on noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). Although 80% of NCDs occur in low-to-middle-income countries, the evidence on PA comes mainly from high-income countries. In this context, the report card for Colombia is an advocacy tool to help in the translation of evidence into concrete actions. The aims of this paper were two-fold: to present the methodology used to develop the first Report Card on Physical Activity in Colombian Children and Youth and to summarize the results.

Methods:

Twelve indicators of PA were graded using numerical grades (5, highest, to 1, lowest) based on data from national surveys and policy documents.

Results:

National policy and obesity indicators were graded “4,” while departmental policy and overweight indicators were graded “3.” Overall PA levels, sports participation, sedentary behaviors and nongovernment initiatives were graded “2,” and school influence was graded “1.” Active transportation, active play, low cardiorespiratory fitness, and family and community influence received an incomplete.

Conclusion:

PA levels are low and sedentary behaviors are high in Colombian children and youth. Although the prevalence of obesity in Colombia is lower compared with other Latin American countries, it is increasing. A rich legal framework and availability of institutional arrangements provide unique opportunities to bridge the gap between knowledge and practice that need to be evaluated.