School Nutrition Programs May Slow Weight Gain in Teens

[Psych Central, 12/30/18]  Preteens and teens who attend middle schools with nutrition policies and healthy-eating programs experience less of an increase in body mass index (BMI) compared to students who attend schools without such programs, according to a new study led by the Yale School of Public Health.

The findings are published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

More than one in five American teenagers are currently obese, and around half of teens are overweight. Being overweight or obese early in life affects health across the lifespan, contributing to a range of chronic diseases such as depression, hypertension and diabetes that reduce productivity and shorten life expectancy.

The five-year trial followed nearly 600 students from 12 schools in New Haven, Connecticut. It is one of the first school-based policy intervention studies that followed students through middle school.

“These findings can guide future school and community interventions. Childhood obesity is a serious health threat, and schools are a vital way to reach children and their families to reduce risks and promote health,” said lead author Dr. Jeannette Ickovics, the Samuel and Liselotte Herman Professor of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Yale School of Public Health…….

Read the Full Article at: Psych Central

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