A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book, so goes an Irish saying. A recently published study, in the journal Pediatrics, proves that the Irish were unleashing pearls of wisdom when they recommended a long sleep.
The study, headed by a Temple University professor, was an attempt to draw a correlation between the amount of sleep school children have and the children’s weight and food intake.
As you may be aware, childhood obesity has been skyrocketing over the years, and in the US, 17% of children have developed obesity. A confluence of factors, such as super-sized portions, sugary drinks and general inactivity, have been implicated in the surge in the prevalence of childhood obesity. However, the role of other factors, such as the duration of sleep, have not been fully investigated, even though previous studies have often found a causal relationship between sleep and obesity.
The purpose of this study then was to find out how sleep, or lack thereof, could be a contributing factor in childhood obesity.