Physical activity, health, body mass index, sleeping habits and body complaints in Australian senior high school students.
ABSTRACT Adolescents in the industrial world are becoming less physically active and are increasingly adopting a sedentary life-style in front of computers and television screens.
to determine self-related health, physical activity, sleeping habits, prevalence of overweight, and body complaints in Australian senior high school students.
Participants were 466 high school students aged 15-17 years enrolled in academic and vocational programs. A questionnaire was completed at two senior high schools with questions about weight and height, health, physical activity, type of physical activity/sport, intensity, sleeping habits, and possible injuries or complaints during the last three months.
Seventy seven percent of the high school students participated in sports on a regular basis. Compared with vocational programs, more males and females in academic programs participated in sports (71% and 80% respectively) (p = .036). Males reported significantly better health than females (p < .0001). 65% of the study group reported body complaints during the last 3 months. A higher number of females than males reported complaints about the back (p = .007) and the hip (p = .05). Good sleep was reported in 82.1% of males and in 76.6% of females. In males, 44.3% were often sleepy in the daytime (females 56.6%, p < .01).
Underweight, physical activity and good sleep are factors with significant positive effect on good health, whereas overweight is a negative factor. Proper sleep habits and higher physical activity levels should be promoted among high school students, and TV viewing time and video game use restricted. Additionally, schools should provide opportunities for young people to participate in a wider range of physical activities that address their individual needs while promoting the health benefits of engaging in regular exercise.
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ABSTRACT: To develop an internationally acceptable definition of child overweight and obesity, specifying the measurement, the reference population, and the age and sex specific cut off points. International survey of six large nationally representative cross sectional growth studies. Brazil, Great Britain, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Singapore, and the United States. 97 876 males and 94 851 females from birth to 25 years of age. Body mass index (weight/height(2)). For each of the surveys, centile curves were drawn that at age 18 years passed through the widely used cut off points of 25 and 30 kg/m(2) for adult overweight and obesity. The resulting curves were averaged to provide age and sex specific cut off points from 2-18 years. The proposed cut off points, which are less arbitrary and more internationally based than current alternatives, should help to provide internationally comparable prevalence rates of overweight and obesity in children.BMJ 06/2000; 320(7244):1240-3. · 14.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Excessive 'screen time' has been associated with a range of psychosocial disturbances and increasing pediatric obesity. This study describes the magnitude, distribution, composition and time-distribution of children's screen use; examines correlates of screen use; and characterises 'extreme' screen users (top quartile). 1,039 South Australian children aged 10-13 years old completed a multimedia 24-hour activity recall diary on 2-4 occasions in 2002, including at least one school day and one non-school day. The median screen time was 229 minutes.d(-1). This was higher in boys (264 vs. 196 minutes; p<0.001) and on non-school days (260 vs. 190 minutes; p<0.001), increased with age (p=0.003), and decreased with socio-economic status (SES; p=0.003). Television consumed 73% of all screen time, video games 19%, non-game computer use 6%, and cinema 2%. The top quartile of screen users were more likely to be boys (OR=3.8), have low physical activity (OR=4.3), spend >25% of screen time playing video games (OR=1.8), sleep less, and be of lower SES. Interventions to reduce screen time should target inactive, low-SES boys, encourage earlier bedtimes, and limit video game use.Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health 05/2006; 30(2):137-42. · 1.64 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Evidence is growing that sleep problems in adolescents are significant impediments to learning and negatively affect behaviour, attainment of social competence and quality of life. The objectives of the study were to determine the level of sleepiness among students in high school, to identify factors to explain it, and to determine the association between sleepiness and performance in both academic and extracurricular activities A cross-sectional survey of 2201 high school students in the Hamilton Wentworth District School Board and the Near North District School Board in Ontario was conducted in 1998/9. A similar survey was done three years later involving 1034 students in the Grand Erie District School Board in the same Province. The Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) was used to measure sleepiness and we also assessed the reliability of this tool for this population. Descriptive analysis of the cohort and information on various measures of performance and demographic data were included. Regression analysis, using the generalised estimating equation (GEE), was utilized to investigate factors associated with risk of sleepiness (ESS>10). Seventy per cent of the students had less than 8.5 hours weeknight sleep. Bedtime habits such as a consistent bedtime routine, staying up late or drinking caffeinated beverages before bed were statistically significantly associated with ESS, as were weeknight sleep quantity and gender. As ESS increased there was an increase in the proportion of students who felt their grades had dropped because of sleepiness, were late for school, were often extremely sleepy at school, and were involved in fewer extracurricular activities. These performance measures were statistically significantly associated with ESS. Twenty-three percent of the students felt their grades had dropped because of sleepiness. Most students (58-68%) reported that they were "really sleepy" between 8 and 10 A.M. Sleep deprivation and excessive daytime sleepiness were common in two samples of Ontario high school students and were associated with a decrease in academic achievement and extracurricular activity. There is a need to increase awareness of this problem in the education and health communities and to translate knowledge already available to strategies to address it.BMC Public Health 02/2006; 6:116. · 2.08 Impact Factor