Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Children with ADHD have higher risk of teenage obesity, physical inactivity

Date:
March 4, 2014
Source:
Imperial College London
Summary:
Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are more likely to become obese and sedentary teenagers, according to new research. Previous studies have suggested a link between ADHD and obesity, but whether one leads to the other is unclear. Conduct disorder, a condition related to ADHD and linked to tendencies towards delinquency, rulebreaking and violence, was also found to increase risk of obesity and physical inactivity among teens.

Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are more likely to become obese and sedentary teenagers, according to new research.

Previous studies have suggested a link between ADHD and obesity, but whether one leads to the other is unclear. One way to better understand the link is to follow children through to adolescence.

The new study, which followed almost 7000 children in Finland, found that those who had ADHD symptoms at age eight had significantly higher odds of being obese at age 16. Children who had ADHD symptoms were also less physically active as teenagers.

Researchers from Imperial College London reported the findings in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

ADHD affects two to five per cent of school-aged children and young people in the UK and is related to poor school performance. The main symptoms are inattentiveness, hyperactivity and impulsivity. ADHD is complex to diagnose, but screening questionnaires can give an indication of a probable diagnosis, based on a child's behaviour.

Conduct disorder, a condition related to ADHD and linked to tendencies towards delinquency, rulebreaking and violence, was also found to increase risk of obesity and physical inactivity among teens.

The nine per cent of children in the study who had positive results on an ADHD screener at age 8 were at higher risk of obesity at age 16. Senior author, visiting Professor Alina Rodriguez, from the School of Public Health at Imperial College London, said: "Obesity is a growing problem that we need to watch out for in all children and young people, but these findings suggest that it's particularly important for children with ADHD.

"It appears that lack of physical activity might be a key factor. We think encouraging children with ADHD to be more physically active could improve their behavior problems as well as helping them to stay a healthy weight, and studies should be carried out to test this theory."

Furthermore, children who were less inclined to take part in physically active play as 8 year-olds were more likely to have inattention as teenagers. Binge eating, which was also investigated as a possible factor that could contribute to the link with obesity, was not more prevalent in children with ADHD.

According to Public Health England around 28% of children aged 2 to 15 are overweight or obese. Obesity in childhood and adolescence is linked to a wide variety of short- and long-term health risks, including type 2 diabetes, heart and circulatory disease, and mental health conditions.

The study used questionnaires completed by parents and teachers to assess 6934 children for ADHD and conduct disorder symptoms at ages eight and 16.

Body mass index was calculated based on parents' reports of their children's height and weight at age seven. At age 16, the participants had health examinations that recorded their height, weight, waist and hip measurements.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Imperial College London. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Natasha Khalife, Marko Kantomaa, Vivette Glover, Tuija Tammelin, Jaana Laitinen, Hanna Ebeling, Tuula Hurtig, Marjo-Riitta Jarvelin, Alina Rodriguez. Childhood Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Symptoms Are Risk Factors for Obesity and Physical Inactivity in Adolescence. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 2014; DOI: 10.1016/j.jaac.2014.01.009

Cite This Page:

Imperial College London. "Children with ADHD have higher risk of teenage obesity, physical inactivity." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140304094529.htm>.
Imperial College London. (2014, March 4). Children with ADHD have higher risk of teenage obesity, physical inactivity. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140304094529.htm
Imperial College London. "Children with ADHD have higher risk of teenage obesity, physical inactivity." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140304094529.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins