Our children are staying up later and sleeping less. New research confirms that sleep debt contributes to obesity in young children.
Researchers at the University of Virginia analyzed a large sample of 4 and 5-year olds from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study–Birth Cohort. The timing and duration of sleep were noted by parents of these children by a questionnaire.
- Obesity was more likely in for children sleeping less than nine and one-half hours a night.
- Obesity was more likely for 5 year-olds going to bed at 9 PM or waking before 6:30 AM.
- Sleeping more would be an easy remedy. Parents could catch some more shut-eye too.
The study appears in Pediatric Obesity.