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Int J Obes (Lond). 2014 Jan;38(1):32-9. doi: 10.1038/ijo.2013.147. Epub 2013 Aug 8.

Short sleep duration and large variability in sleep duration are independently associated with dietary risk factors for obesity in Danish school children.

Author information

1
1] Department of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark [2] Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
2
Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
3
Division of Nutrition, National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, Søborg, Denmark.
4
Healthy Active Living and Obesity Research Group, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute, Ottawa, Canada.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Lack of sleep and increased consumption of energy-dense foods and sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) have all been suggested as factors contributing to the increased prevalence of overweight and obesity.

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate whether objectively measured sleep duration (average and day-to-day variability) as well as parent-reported sleep problems are independently associated with proposed dietary risk factors for overweight and obesity in 8-11-year-old children.

DESIGN:

In this cross-sectional study, data on sleep duration and day-to-day variability in sleep duration were measured in 676 Danish, apparently healthy children by an objective measure (actigraphy) for 8 nights, and the Children's Sleep Habits Questionnaire (CSHQ) was filled out by the parents. Diet was recorded using a web-based food record for 7 consecutive days. Fasting blood samples were obtained for measurements of plasma leptin and ghrelin levels.

RESULTS:

Sleep duration (h per night) was negatively associated with energy density (ED) of the diet (β = -0.32 kJ g(-1)), added sugar (β = -1.50 E%) and SSBs (β = -1.07 E%) (all P ≤ 0.003). Furthermore, variability in sleep duration (10-min per night) was positively associated with SSBs (β = 0.20 E%, P = 0.03), independent of sleep duration, and CSHQ score was positively associated with ED (β = 0.16 kJ g(-1), P = 0.04). All of these associations were independent of potential confounders (age, sex, pubertal status, height, weight, screen time, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity and parental education and ethnicity).

CONCLUSION:

Our study suggests that short sleep duration, high sleep duration variability and experiencing sleep problems are all associated with a poor, obesity-promoting diet in children.

PMID:
23924757
DOI:
10.1038/ijo.2013.147
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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