Family meals could protect teens from obesity in adulthood

Oct. 4, 2014, Science World Report

By Catherine Griffin

A simple, family meal each day may reduce the risk of obesity in teens. Scientists have found that family meals during adolescence were protective for overweight and obesity in adulthood.

In order to see whether family meals played a role in obesity reduction, the scientists used data from a 10-year longitudinal study. They examined weight-related variables, such as dietary intake, physical activity, and weight control behaviors among adolescents. Then the scientists asked questions to assess family meal frequency and body mass index.

About 51 percent of the subjects were overweight while 22 percent were obese. More surprising though was the rate seen among adolescents who never ate family meals together; 60 percent were overweight and 29 percent were obese at a 10-year follow-up. There was also a stronger positive effect when it came to family meal frequency among black young adults compared with white young adults. Continue reading

Minority kids may need longer support to keep weight off

Aug. 7, 2013, MedPage Today

By Cole Petrochko

A lifestyle modification program for obese minority and inner city teens effectively helped them manage body mass index and nutrition, but the benefits wore off after the program’s conclusion, researchers found.

During nine months of the behavior- and nutrition-modifying intervention, participants saw significant reductions in rates of BMI increase (0.13 versus 0.04,P<0.01), BMI percentile (0.0002 versus -0.0001, P<0.01), the percentage of overweight participants (0.001 versus -0.001, P<0.01), and in BMI z-score (0.003 versus -0.003, P<0.01), according to Jessica Rieder, M.D., of the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore in New York City, and colleagues. Continue reading