Background: This study reported compliance with 24-hour physical activity and sedentary behavior guidelines, and associations with adiposity in the first 2 years of life. Methods: Participants (N = 119) were recruited from Soweto, South Africa. Visceral and subcutaneous abdominal adipose tissue was measured by ultrasound. Participation in 2 movement behaviors (physical activity and sedentary time) was reported by mothers. Differences in adiposity between those meeting each individual guideline, as well as the combination of both movement guidelines, compared with those not meeting the guidelines were assessed. Results: Only 5% of infants met the sedentary guidelines; however, 58% met the physical activity guidelines. Subcutaneous adipose tissue was significantly higher in those meeting the physical activity guideline (0.50 [0.01] vs 0.47 [0.01] cm, P = .03) compared with those not meeting the guideline. Meeting the screen time component of the sedentary guideline was associated with higher visceral adipose tissue (β = 0.96, P < .01), while meeting one guideline compared with meeting none was associated with higher subcutaneous adipose tissue (β = 0.05, P = .01). Conclusions: Most infants and toddlers from this low- to middle-income setting were not meeting sedentary behavior guidelines. Both behaviors were associated with abdominal adiposity, but not with body mass index z score; implying these movement behaviors may impact abdominal fat deposition rather than body size.
Alessandra Prioreschi and Lisa K. Micklesfield
Estelle D. Watson, Mireille N. M. Van Poppel, Rachel A. Jones, Shane A Norris, and Lisa K. Micklesfield
Although physical activity during pregnancy may be beneficial, the prenatal period is a vulnerable time for decreasing physical activity levels and increasing sedentary time.
This longitudinal cohort study measured physical activity using the Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ) in singleton, pregnant women in the second (14–18 wk gestation; n = 332) and third trimester (29–33 wk; n = 256).
There was a significant decrease in total MVPA (MET mins/wk) between the second and third trimester (P = .01). The majority of physical activity time was spent in walking for transport (80%), and less than 2% in recreational activities. In both trimesters, being married was inversely associated with walking for transport (second trimester: β = –0.12 95% CI = –0.31 to –0.02, third trimester: β = –0.17 95% CI = –0.47 to –0.07) and owning a car was positively associated with recreational physical activity (second trimester: β = 0.16 95% CI = 0.02 to 0.32, third trimester: β = 0.17 95% CI = 0.04 to 0.27). The women spent an average of 5 hours per day sitting.
The low and declining levels of physical activity during pregnancy in this population are a concern. Interventions that include lifestyle education and provision of accessible recreational physical activity programs for pregnant women are needed.
Monika Uys, Susan Bassett, Catherine E. Draper, Lisa Micklesfield, Andries Monyeki, Anniza de Villiers, Estelle V. Lambert, and the HAKSA 2016 Writing Group
We present results of the 2016 Healthy Active Kids South Africa (HAKSA) Report Card on the current status of physical activity (PA) and nutrition in South African youth. The context in which we interpret the findings is that participation in PA is a fundamental human right, along with the right to “attainment of the highest standard of health.”
The HAKSA 2016 Writing Group was comprised of 33 authorities in physical education, exercise science, nutrition, public health, and journalism. The search strategy was based on peer-reviewed manuscripts, dissertations, and ‘gray’ literature. The core PA indicators are Overall Physical Activity Level; Organized Sport Participation; Active and Outdoor Play; Active Transportation; Sedentary Behaviors; Family and Peer Influences; School; Community and the Built Environment; and National Government Policy, Strategies, and Investment. In addition, we reported on Physical Fitness and Motor Proficiency separately. We also reported on nutrition indicators including Overweight and Under-nutrition along with certain key behaviors such as Fruit and Vegetable Intake, and policies and programs including School Nutrition Programs and Tuck Shops. Data were extracted and grades assigned after consensus was reached. Grades were assigned to each indicator ranging from an A, succeeding with a large majority of children and youth (81% to 100%); B, succeeding with well over half of children and youth (61% to 80%); C, succeeding with about half of children and youth (41% to 60%); D, succeeding with less than half but some children and youth (21% to 40%); and F, succeeding with very few children and youth (0% to 20%); INC is inconclusive.
Overall PA levels received a C grade, as we are succeeding with more than 50% of children meeting recommendations. Organized Sports Participation also received a C, and Government Policies remain promising, receiving a B. Screen time and sedentary behavior were a major concern. Under- and over-weight were highlighted and, as overweight is on the rise, received a D grade.
In particular, issues of food security, obesogenic environments, and access to activity-supportive environments should guide social mobilization downstream and policy upstream. There is an urgent need for practice-based evidence based on evaluation of existing, scaled up interventions.