Démêler l'association entre le sommeil et l'obésité chez les enfants et les adolescents


Jennifer Mcgrath

Centre PERFORM - Université Concordia


Domaine : Santé de la mère, des enfants et des adolescents

Programme chercheurs-boursiers - Senior

Concours 2016-2017

One in four Canadian children is overweight or obese. Over the past 25 years, the level of overweight and obesity has doubled. This is worrying because it has long term health consequences. Childhood obesity increases risk for many diseases such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. While obesity levels have been rising, the amount of time children spend sleeping has been decreasing. There is convincing evidence showing that children who sleep less have a larger body size. However, the amount of timing spent sleeping might not tell the whole story. Having awakenings throughout the night or going to bed inconsistent with your internal clock may be more problematic.

Researchers are still working to disentangle the factors that link sleep and obesity. Some factors include hormones dealing with appetite, the body's response to stress, and changes in metabolism and sensitivity to insulin. Where we live can also influence our health and behaviours, and in particular our risk of being obese. Obesity is linked to our levels of physical activity, but it is also linked to our sleep quality and to our levels of stress.

This study will examine the pathways linking sleep to childhood obesity. We will also consider things that influence activities during the day and night in the neighborhood.  The project will result in new information about why sleep may be linked to obesity. This information has potential to prevent and treat obesity.