Late Bedtimes Add Weight in Children

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.

Results

  • 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.