Screen-based media use, physical activity level and body mass index of children and youth in Nova Scotia
LE3 .A278 2006
Bachelor of Kinesiology
There is an increasing trend towards overweight and obesity in children and youth in North America. This trend has typically been associated with poor nutritional practices and reduced physical activity. Certain leisure time activities such as the number of hours of television viewing, playing video games and internet/computer use have also been implicated. Objective: The goal of this project was to assess the relationships between objectively measured physical activity, BMI, and screen-based media use. Participants: We studied a large, random sample of male and female grade 3, 7 and 11 (n=1643) students in the province of Nova Scotia. Design/Setting: A child/youth questionnaire was administered to gather information on media use of participants. Height and weight were recorded for each participant and an accelerometer was worn for 7 consecutive days. Results: Physical activity to achieve health benefits (defined as 60 minutes or more of moderate to vigorous physical activity 5 or more days per week) in this population decreased significantly between grades 3 and 7 and females were particularly at risk. The use of media increased with age but did not always relate significantly to physical activity levels or BMI in this population. Conclusion: Leisure time pursuits including television viewing and screen-based media use in general, do not seem to have the direct relationships with physical inactivity and increasing BMI that have previously been reported.
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