Next Issue
Previous Issue

E-Mail Alert

Add your e-mail address to receive forthcoming issues of this journal:

Journal Browser

Journal Browser

Table of Contents

Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 9, Issue 4 (April 2012), Pages 1030-1522

  • Issues are regarded as officially published after their release is announced to the table of contents alert mailing list.
  • You may sign up for e-mail alerts to receive table of contents of newly released issues.
  • PDF is the official format for papers published in both, html and pdf forms. To view the papers in pdf format, click on the "PDF Full-text" link, and use the free Adobe Readerexternal link to open them.
View options order results:
result details:
Displaying articles 1-29
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review, Other

Open AccessArticle Quiet Areas and the Need for Quietness in Amsterdam
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1030-1050; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041030
Received: 8 March 2012 / Revised: 15 March 2012 / Accepted: 19 March 2012 / Published: 23 March 2012
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (980 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper describes the Quiet Places Project in Amsterdam. The purpose of the study was to find out: (1) which public quiet places there are according to Amsterdam residents; (2) what characterizes a quiet place; (3) to what extent do residents want peace
[...] Read more.
This paper describes the Quiet Places Project in Amsterdam. The purpose of the study was to find out: (1) which public quiet places there are according to Amsterdam residents; (2) what characterizes a quiet place; (3) to what extent do residents want peace and quiet; (4) how do residents realize these needs. The factors determining the need for quietness are presented in a model showing the influence of demographic and socio-economic issues, health status, sensitiveness to noise, daily activities and the noisiness in and around home. Most important of these factors is sensitivity to noise. Elderly and less healthy people are more often sensitive to noise. People who are annoyed by sound from traffic, airplanes and the like show a higher need for quietness. People with a lively household or neighbourhood report lower needs for quietness. Visiting a quiet place and going outside to walk or bike can have a compensating effect on the need for quietness. This suggests that creating quiet places and enhancing possibilities for quiet recreation in urban environments can have a positive effect on the quality of life in the city. Objective noise levels at the quiet places were taken from environmental noise maps. This shows that there may be a preference for low transportation noise levels, but levels up to 60 dB Lday are acceptable. Apparently this depends on a relative quietness or on non-acoustic characteristics of an area: the presence of vegetation and other pleasant stimuli. Full article
Open AccessArticle Binational Arsenic Exposure Survey: Methodology and Estimated Arsenic Intake from Drinking Water and Urinary Arsenic Concentrations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1051-1067; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041051
Received: 28 January 2012 / Revised: 20 March 2012 / Accepted: 20 March 2012 / Published: 26 March 2012
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (356 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Binational Arsenic Exposure Survey (BAsES) was designed to evaluate probable arsenic exposures in selected areas of southern Arizona and northern Mexico, two regions with known elevated levels of arsenic in groundwater reserves. This paper describes the methodology of BAsES and the relationship
[...] Read more.
The Binational Arsenic Exposure Survey (BAsES) was designed to evaluate probable arsenic exposures in selected areas of southern Arizona and northern Mexico, two regions with known elevated levels of arsenic in groundwater reserves. This paper describes the methodology of BAsES and the relationship between estimated arsenic intake from beverages and arsenic output in urine. Households from eight communities were selected for their varying groundwater arsenic concentrations in Arizona, USA and Sonora, Mexico. Adults responded to questionnaires and provided dietary information. A first morning urine void and water from all household drinking sources were collected. Associations between urinary arsenic concentration (total, organic, inorganic) and estimated level of arsenic consumed from water and other beverages were evaluated through crude associations and by random effects models. Median estimated total arsenic intake from beverages among participants from Arizona communities ranged from 1.7 to 14.1 µg/day compared to 0.6 to 3.4 µg/day among those from Mexico communities. In contrast, median urinary inorganic arsenic concentrations were greatest among participants from Hermosillo, Mexico (6.2 µg/L) whereas a high of 2.0 µg/L was found among participants from Ajo, Arizona. Estimated arsenic intake from drinking water was associated with urinary total arsenic concentration (p < 0.001), urinary inorganic arsenic concentration (p < 0.001), and urinary sum of species (p < 0.001). Urinary arsenic concentrations increased between 7% and 12% for each one percent increase in arsenic consumed from drinking water. Variability in arsenic intake from beverages and urinary arsenic output yielded counter intuitive results. Estimated intake of arsenic from all beverages was greatest among Arizonans yet participants in Mexico had higher urinary total and inorganic arsenic concentrations. Other contributors to urinary arsenic concentrations should be evaluated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drinking Water and Health)
Figures

Open AccessArticle Respiratory Symptoms and Pulmonary Functions of Workers Employed in Turkish Textile Dyeing Factories
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1068-1076; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041068
Received: 28 February 2012 / Revised: 19 March 2012 / Accepted: 20 March 2012 / Published: 26 March 2012
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (257 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Dyes are known to be a causative agent of occupational asthma in workers exposed to them. We have evaluated respiratory symptoms among textile workers. The study population comprised 106 exposed workers and a control (unexposed) group. Data were collected by a questionnaire. PFTs
[...] Read more.
Dyes are known to be a causative agent of occupational asthma in workers exposed to them. We have evaluated respiratory symptoms among textile workers. The study population comprised 106 exposed workers and a control (unexposed) group. Data were collected by a questionnaire. PFTs (Pulmonary Function Test) were performed. Among the exposed workers 36.8% defined phlegm. Respiratory symptoms were not significantly different between two groups. The employment duration of the exposed workers with phlegm was longer than those without phlegm (p = 0.027). The mean % predicted of FEF25–75 of the exposed workers was found to be significantly lower than the control (unexposed) group (p = 0.01). Our study suggests that textile dyeing might cause respiratory symptoms in workers. Full article
Open AccessArticle Integrating Susceptibility into Environmental Policy: An Analysis of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for Lead
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1077-1096; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041077
Received: 1 February 2012 / Revised: 20 March 2012 / Accepted: 21 March 2012 / Published: 27 March 2012
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (368 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Susceptibility to chemical toxins has not been adequately addressed in risk assessment methodologies. As a result, environmental policies may fail to meet their fundamental goal of protecting the public from harm. This study examines how characterization of risk may change when susceptibility is
[...] Read more.
Susceptibility to chemical toxins has not been adequately addressed in risk assessment methodologies. As a result, environmental policies may fail to meet their fundamental goal of protecting the public from harm. This study examines how characterization of risk may change when susceptibility is explicitly considered in policy development; in particular we examine the process used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set a National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for lead. To determine a NAAQS, EPA estimated air lead-related decreases in child neurocognitive function through a combination of multiple data elements including concentration-response (CR) functions. In this article, we present alternative scenarios for determining a lead NAAQS using CR functions developed in populations more susceptible to lead toxicity due to socioeconomic disadvantage. The use of CR functions developed in susceptible groups resulted in cognitive decrements greater than original EPA estimates. EPA’s analysis suggested that a standard level of 0.15 µg/m3 would fulfill decision criteria, but by incorporating susceptibility we found that options for the standard could reasonably be extended to lower levels. The use of data developed in susceptible populations would result in the selection of a more protective NAAQS under the same decision framework applied by EPA. Results are used to frame discussion regarding why cumulative risk assessment methodologies are needed to help inform policy development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cumulative Health Risk Assessment)
Open AccessArticle Success Counteracting Tobacco Company Interference in Thailand: An Example of FCTC Implementation for Low- and Middle-income Countries
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1111-1134; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041111
Received: 21 February 2012 / Revised: 17 March 2012 / Accepted: 19 March 2012 / Published: 27 March 2012
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (347 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) interfere regularly in policymaking in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO Framework Convention for Tobacco Control provides mechanisms and guidance for dealing with TTC interference, but many countries still face ‘how to’ challenges of implementation. For more than
[...] Read more.
Transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) interfere regularly in policymaking in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO Framework Convention for Tobacco Control provides mechanisms and guidance for dealing with TTC interference, but many countries still face ‘how to’ challenges of implementation. For more than two decades, Thailand’s public health community has been developing a system for identifying and counteracting strategies TTCs use to derail, delay and undermine tobacco control policymaking. Consequently, Thailand has already implemented most of the FCTC guidelines for counteracting TTC interference. In this study, our aims are to describe strategies TTCs have used in Thailand to interfere in policymaking, and to examine how the public health community in Thailand has counteracted TTC interference. We analyzed information reported by three groups with a stake in tobacco control policies: Thai tobacco control advocates, TTCs, and international tobacco control experts. To identify TTC viewpoints and strategies, we also extracted information from internal tobacco industry documents. We synthesized these data and identified six core strategies TTCs use to interfere in tobacco control policymaking: (1) doing business with ‘two faces’, (2) seeking to influence people in high places, (3) ‘buying’ advocates in grassroots organizations, (4) putting up a deceptive front, (5) intimidation, and (6) undermining controls on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. We present three case examples showing where TTCs have employed multiple interference strategies simultaneously, and showing how Thai tobacco control advocates have successfully counteracted those strategies by: (1) conducting vigilant surveillance, (2) excluding tobacco companies from policymaking, (3) restricting tobacco company sales, (4) sustaining pressure, and (5) dedicating resources to the effective enforcement of regulations. Policy implications from this study are that tobacco control advocates in LMICs may be able to develop countermeasures similar to those we identified in Thailand based on FCTC guidelines to limit TTC interference. Full article
Open AccessArticle Seasonal BMI Changes of Rural Women Living in Anatolia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1159-1170; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041159
Received: 1 March 2012 / Revised: 29 March 2012 / Accepted: 30 March 2012 / Published: 2 April 2012
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (514 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Today, obesity is one of the most evident public health problems in many parts of the World and it is more common among women. Several factors are affecting women’s obesity, among these short term weight fluctuations, either gain or loss, cause severe health
[...] Read more.
Today, obesity is one of the most evident public health problems in many parts of the World and it is more common among women. Several factors are affecting women’s obesity, among these short term weight fluctuations, either gain or loss, cause severe health disorders, particularly in rural areas where seasonal activity differs significantly throughout the year. Since this case has not been studied in detail, our research focused on prevalence and probable causes of seasonal rural obesity among women in two rural areas of Turkey. The study was undertaken with 100 participants. One-way ANOVA and one-way repeated ANOVA tests were utilized for categorical, continuous and repeated variables as study contains groups with more than one and repeated variables. Overweight is more common in the 18–30 years and 50+ years groups, whereas the absence of obesity, except during winter of 2010 in the 50+ years of age group, is most probably due to the widespread occurrence of diabetes for this age group. The highest BMI values for all groups, which were 25.2 ± 3.39 for 2009 and 26.1 ± 3.40 for 2010, were determined in winter, because of minimum physical activity, while summer BMIs were 24.1 ± 3.39 in 2009 and 25.1 ± 3.35 in 2010. This decrease was most probably due to intense agricultural field work in both regions. The majority of the women claimed that their weight is balanced in summer but results revealed that participants did not lose all the weight which was gained during winter months although BMI showed a significant fall from spring to autumn. Full article
Open AccessArticle Sickness Absence in the Private Sector of Greece: Comparing Shipyard Industry and National Insurance Data
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1171-1181; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041171
Received: 5 December 2011 / Revised: 22 February 2012 / Accepted: 28 March 2012 / Published: 2 April 2012
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (279 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Approximately 3% of employees are absent from work due to illness daily in Europe, while in some countries sickness absence exceeds 20 days per year. Based on a limited body of reliable studies, Greek employees in the private sector seem to be absent
[...] Read more.
Approximately 3% of employees are absent from work due to illness daily in Europe, while in some countries sickness absence exceeds 20 days per year. Based on a limited body of reliable studies, Greek employees in the private sector seem to be absent far less frequently ( < 5 days/year) compared to most of the industrialized world. The aim of this study was to estimate the levels of sickness absence in the private sector in Greece, using shipyard and national insurance data. Detailed data on absenteeism of employees in a large shipyard company during the period 1999–2006 were utilized. National data on compensated days due to sickness absence concerning all employees (around 2 million) insured by the Social Insurance Institute (IKA, the largest insurance scheme in Greece) were retrieved from the Institute’s annual statistical reports for the period 1987–2006. Sick-leave days per employee and sick-leave rate (%) were calculated, among other indicators. In the shipyard cohort, the employment time loss due to sick leave was 1%. The mean number of sick-leave days per employee in shipyards ranged between 4.6 and 8.7 and sick-leave rate (sickness absenteeism rate) varied among 2% and 3.7%. The corresponding indicators for IKA were estimated between 5 and 6.3 sick-leave days per insured employee (median 5.8), and 2.14–2.72% (median 2.49%), respectively. Short sick-leave spells ( < 4 days) may account at least for the 25% of the total number of sick-leave days, currently not recorded in national statistics. The level of sickness absence in the private sector in Greece was found to be higher than the suggested by previous reports and international comparative studies, but still remains one of the lowest in the industrialized world. In the 20-years national data, the results also showed a 7-year wave in sickness absence indexes (a decrease during the period 1991–1997 and an increase in 1998–2004) combined with a small yet significant decline as a general trend. These observations deserve detailed monitoring and could only partly be attributed to the compensation and unemployment rates in Greece so other possible reasons should be explored. Full article
Open AccessArticle Evaluation of Changes in Effluent Quality from Industrial Complexes on the Korean Nationwide Scale Using a Self-Organizing Map
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1182-1200; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041182
Received: 6 March 2012 / Revised: 26 March 2012 / Accepted: 30 March 2012 / Published: 11 April 2012
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (867 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
One of the major issues related to the environment in the 21st century is sustainable development. The innovative economic growth policy has supported relatively successful economic development, but poor environmental conservation efforts, have consequently resulted in serious water quality pollution issues. Hence, assessments
[...] Read more.
One of the major issues related to the environment in the 21st century is sustainable development. The innovative economic growth policy has supported relatively successful economic development, but poor environmental conservation efforts, have consequently resulted in serious water quality pollution issues. Hence, assessments of water quality and health are fundamental processes towards conserving and restoring aquatic ecosystems. In this study, we characterized spatial and temporal changes in water quality (specifically physico-chemical variables plus priority and non-priority pollutants) of discharges from industrial complexes on a national scale in Korea. The data were provided by the Water Quality Monitoring Program operated by the Ministry of Environment, Korea and were measured from 1989 to 2008 on a monthly basis at 61 effluent monitoring sites located at industrial complexes. Analysis of monthly and annual changes in water quality, using the seasonal Mann-Kendall test, indicated an improvement in water quality, which was inferred from a continuous increase in dissolved oxygen and decrease in other water quality factors. A Self-Organizing Map, which is an unsupervised artificial neural network, also indicated an improvement of effluent water quality, by showing spatial and temporal differences in the effluent water quality as well as in the occurrence of priority pollutants. Finally, our results suggested that continued long-term monitoring is necessary to establish plans and policies for wastewater management and health assessment. Full article
Open AccessArticle Impact of Hispanic Ethnic Concentration and Socioeconomic Status on Obesity Prevalence in Texas Counties
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1201-1215; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041201
Received: 16 January 2012 / Revised: 21 March 2012 / Accepted: 28 March 2012 / Published: 11 April 2012
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (343 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The purpose of this study is to determine whether Hispanic ethnic concentration is associated with a higher prevalence of obesity and, if this relationship exists, whether it is affected by the socioeconomic environment. The study uses the Texas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System
[...] Read more.
The purpose of this study is to determine whether Hispanic ethnic concentration is associated with a higher prevalence of obesity and, if this relationship exists, whether it is affected by the socioeconomic environment. The study uses the Texas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) linked to 2000 census data to access the relationship between prevalence of obesity, Hispanic ethnic concentration, poverty and level of education at a county-level. The findings suggest that the association of Hispanic ethnic concentration and obesity varies by socioeconomic environment. Although little influence was observed for % poverty, the relationship between Hispanic ethnic concentration and obesity differed by county-level educational attainment. High proportion of residents with a bachelor’s degree is associated with a low prevalence of obesity; counties with both high % Hispanic and high % with Bachelor’s degrees had the lowest prevalence of obesity. Our results suggest that promoting and improving education, perhaps including training on healthful living, may serve as an effective means of curbing current obesity trends and associated health problems in Hispanic and possibly other ethnic communities. Full article
Open AccessArticle Primary Prevention of Lead Exposure—Blood Lead Results at Age Two Years
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1216-1226; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041216
Received: 14 March 2012 / Revised: 30 March 2012 / Accepted: 5 April 2012 / Published: 11 April 2012
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (193 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Objectives: The Philadelphia Lead Safe Homes (LSH) Study was designed to evaluate whether educational and environmental interventions in the first year of life for families of newborns increased knowledge of lead exposure prevention and were associated with less elevation of blood lead
[...] Read more.
Objectives: The Philadelphia Lead Safe Homes (LSH) Study was designed to evaluate whether educational and environmental interventions in the first year of life for families of newborns increased knowledge of lead exposure prevention and were associated with less elevation of blood lead levels (BLLs) for these children, when compared to children receiving standard care. Methods: The current study performed descriptive statistics on the second-year BLL data for both groups and compared these using chi-square tests for proportions and unpaired t-tests for means. Results: A BLL result was found for 159 (50.6%) of the 314 LSH cohort children and 331 (52.7%) of the 628 control children (p = 0.1). Mean and standard deviation for age at draw was 23.8 (3.4) months versus 23.6 (3.1) months (P = 0.6). Geometric mean BLLs were 3.7 versus 3.5 µg/dL (P = 0.4). The percentages of the cohort group with a BLL of ≥20, ≥10 and ≥5 μg/dL, respectively, were 0.6%, 5% and 30%; for the controls 1.2%, 6.6%, and 25%. These percentages were not significantly different between groups. Conclusion: A comparison of geometric mean BLLs and percentages above several BLL cut points drawn at age two years in a group of urban newborns benefitting from study interventions versus a group of similar urban children did not yield statistically significant differences. Both groups had relatively lower lead levels when compared to historical cohort groups, which may reflect a continuing downward trend in BLLs in U.S. children. The interventions did result in benefits to the families such as an increase in parental knowledge about lead exposure prevention and in-home wet cleaning activity, and a decrease in lead dust levels in study homes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Maternal and Child Health)
Open AccessArticle Lessons Learned from the Implementation of a Provincial Breastfeeding Policy in Nova Scotia, Canada and the Implications for Childhood Obesity Prevention
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1308-1318; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041308
Received: 2 December 2011 / Revised: 2 February 2012 / Accepted: 2 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (203 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Healthy public policy plays a central role in creating environments that are supportive of health. Breastfeeding, widely supported as the optimal mode for infant feeding, is a critical factor in promoting infant health. In 2005, the Canadian province of Nova Scotia introduced a
[...] Read more.
Healthy public policy plays a central role in creating environments that are supportive of health. Breastfeeding, widely supported as the optimal mode for infant feeding, is a critical factor in promoting infant health. In 2005, the Canadian province of Nova Scotia introduced a provincial breastfeeding policy. This paper describes the process and outcomes of an evaluation into the implementation of the policy. This evaluation comprised focus groups held with members of provincial and district level breastfeeding committees who were tasked with promoting, protecting and supporting breastfeeding in their districts. Five key themes were identified, which were an unsupportive culture of breastfeeding; the need for strong leadership; the challenges in engaging physicians in dialogue around breastfeeding; lack of understanding around the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes; and breastfeeding as a way to address childhood obesity. Recommendations for other jurisdictions include the need for a policy, the value of leadership, the need to integrate policy with other initiatives across sectors and the importance of coordination and support at multiple levels. Finally, promotion of breastfeeding offers a population-based strategy for addressing the childhood obesity epidemic and should form a core component of any broader strategies or policies for childhood obesity prevention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessCommunication A Pilot Study of a Pictorial Bilingual Nutrition Education Game to Improve the Consumption of Healthful Foods in a Head Start Population
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1319-1325; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041319
Received: 12 January 2012 / Revised: 9 February 2012 / Accepted: 17 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (397 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The prevalence of early childhood obesity has increased dramatically particularly among the Mexican American population. Obesity leads to earlier onset of related diseases such as type 2 diabetes. The Head Start population of Texas is largely Mexican American. Dietary intake in this population
[...] Read more.
The prevalence of early childhood obesity has increased dramatically particularly among the Mexican American population. Obesity leads to earlier onset of related diseases such as type 2 diabetes. The Head Start population of Texas is largely Mexican American. Dietary intake in this population demonstrated a diet very low in fiber, high in salt, and containing excessive calories with a low intake of fruit and vegetables. This study was performed in a Texas Head Start population to evaluate a bilingual pictorial nutrition education game. Acceptance of the bilingual concept and the game had been previously studied in a Head Start population in five Texas counties. The effectiveness in producing a change in eating habits was studied as a pilot project 413 children and their parents at the Bastrop County Head Start. Parents were asked to supply data about at home food frequency at the beginning and the end of the school year and the results compared. The parents were given a demonstration of the educational objectives and the students played the game throughout the year. By the end of the school year there was a statistically significant increase in the vegetables offered to this population both during the week at home (p = 0.009) and on the weekends (p = 0.02). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Paediatric Obesity Research in Early Childhood and the Primary Care Setting: The TARGet Kids! Research Network
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1343-1354; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041343
Received: 2 December 2011 / Revised: 4 January 2012 / Accepted: 4 January 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (302 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Primary paediatric health care is the foundation for preventative child health. In light of the recent obesity epidemic, paediatricians find themselves at the frontline of identification and management of childhood obesity. However, it is well recognized that evidence based approaches to obesity prevention
[...] Read more.
Primary paediatric health care is the foundation for preventative child health. In light of the recent obesity epidemic, paediatricians find themselves at the frontline of identification and management of childhood obesity. However, it is well recognized that evidence based approaches to obesity prevention and subsequent translation of this evidence into practice are critically needed. This paper explores the role of primary care in obesity prevention and introduces a novel application and development of a primary care research network in Canada—TARGet Kids!—to develop and translate an evidence-base on effective screening and prevention of childhood obesity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle The Impact of an Intervention Taught by Trained Teachers on Childhood Overweight
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1355-1367; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041355
Received: 14 October 2011 / Revised: 14 December 2011 / Accepted: 4 January 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (351 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of a six-months’ nutrition program, delivered and taught by classroom teachers with in-service nutrition training, on the prevention of overweight and obesity among children in grades 1 to 4. In this randomized trial,
[...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of a six-months’ nutrition program, delivered and taught by classroom teachers with in-service nutrition training, on the prevention of overweight and obesity among children in grades 1 to 4. In this randomized trial, four hundred and sixty four children from seven elementary schools were allocated to a nutrition educational program delivered by their own teachers. Intervened teachers had 12 sessions of three hours each with the researchers throughout six months, according to the topics nutrition and healthy eating, the importance of drinking water and healthy cooking activities. After each session, teachers were encouraged to develop activities in class focused on the learned topics. Sociodemographic, anthropometric, dietary, and physical activity assessments were performed at baseline and at the end of the intervention. In the intervention group the increase in Body Mass Index (BMI) z-score was significantly lower than in the control group (p = 0.009); fewer proportion of children became overweight in the intervened group compared with the control (5.6% vs. 18.4%; p = 0.037). Our study provides further support to decrease the overweight epidemic, involving classroom teachers in a training program and making them dedicated interventionists. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessCommunication Are Changes in Consumption of “Healthy” Foods Related to Changes in Consumption of “Unhealthy” Foods During Pediatric Obesity Treatment?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1368-1378; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041368
Received: 21 November 2011 / Revised: 22 December 2011 / Accepted: 5 January 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (291 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Increasing fruits and vegetables (FVs), a dietary recommendation for pediatric weight management, is theorized to reduce energy intake by reducing intake of more energy-dense foods, such as snack foods (SFs). This study examined the relationship between changes in FV, SF, and energy intake
[...] Read more.
Increasing fruits and vegetables (FVs), a dietary recommendation for pediatric weight management, is theorized to reduce energy intake by reducing intake of more energy-dense foods, such as snack foods (SFs). This study examined the relationship between changes in FV, SF, and energy intake in children enrolled in a 6-month, family-based behavioral pediatric weight management trial. Secondary data analyses examined dietary intake in 80 overweight ( ≥ 85th to < 95th percentile for body mass index [BMI]) and obese ( ≥ 95th percentile for BMI) children (7.2 ± 1.7 years) with complete dietary records at 0 and 6 months. Participants were randomized to one of three treatment conditions: (1) increased growth monitoring with feedback; (2) decrease SFs and sugar sweetened beverages; or (3) increase FVs and low-fat dairy. With treatment condition controlled in all analyses, FV intake significantly increased, while SF and energy intake decreased, but not significantly, from 0 to 6 months. Change in FV intake was not significantly associated with change in SF consumption. Additionally, change in FV intake was not significantly related to change in energy intake. However, reduction in SF intake was significantly related to reduction in energy intake. Changing only FVs, as compared to changing other dietary behaviors, during a pediatric obesity intervention may not assist with reducing energy intake. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Vegetable and Fruit Intakes of On-Reserve First Nations Schoolchildren Compared to Canadian Averages and Current Recommendations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1379-1397; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041379
Received: 21 December 2011 / Revised: 11 January 2012 / Accepted: 27 January 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (408 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study investigated, in on-reserve First Nations (FN) youth in Ontario, Canada, the following: (a) the intakes of vegetable and fruit, “other” foods and relevant nutrients as compared to current recommendations and national averages, (b) current prevalence rates of overweight and obesity and
[...] Read more.
This study investigated, in on-reserve First Nations (FN) youth in Ontario, Canada, the following: (a) the intakes of vegetable and fruit, “other” foods and relevant nutrients as compared to current recommendations and national averages, (b) current prevalence rates of overweight and obesity and (c) the relationship between latitude and dietary intakes. Twenty-four-hour diet recalls were collected via the Waterloo Web-Based Eating Behaviour Questionnaire (WEB-Q) (n = 443). Heights and weights of participants were self reported using measured values and Body Mass Index was categorized using the International Obesity Task Force cutoffs. Food group and nutrient intakes were compared to current standards, Southern Ontario Food Behaviour data and the Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, using descriptive statistics. Mean vegetable and fruit, fibre and folate intakes were less than current recommendations. Girls aged 14–18 years had mean intakes of vitamin A below current recommendations for this sub-group; for all sub-groups, mean intakes of vegetables and fruit were below Canadian averages. All sub-groups also had intakes of all nutrients and food groups investigated that were less than those observed in non-FN youth from Southern Ontario, with the exception of “other” foods in boys 12–18 years. Prevalence rates of overweight and obesity were 31.8% and 19.6%, respectively, exceeding rates in the general population. Dietary intakes did not vary consistently by latitude (n = 248), as revealed by ANOVA. This study provided a unique investigation of the dietary intakes of on-reserve FN youth in Ontario and revealed poor intakes of vegetables and fruit and related nutrients and high intakes of “other” foods. Prevalence rates of overweight and obesity exceed those of the general population. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Eating Behavior and Childhood Overweight Among Population-Based Elementary Schoolchildren in Japan
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1398-1410; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041398
Received: 8 November 2011 / Revised: 31 January 2012 / Accepted: 6 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (342 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study investigated the relationship between eating behavior and childhood overweight among population-based elementary schoolchildren in Japan. Data was collected from fourth graders (9 or 10 years of age) from Ina Town, Saitama Prefecture, Japan from 1999 to 2009. Information about subjects’ sex,
[...] Read more.
This study investigated the relationship between eating behavior and childhood overweight among population-based elementary schoolchildren in Japan. Data was collected from fourth graders (9 or 10 years of age) from Ina Town, Saitama Prefecture, Japan from 1999 to 2009. Information about subjects’ sex, age, and lifestyle, including eating behaviors (eating until full and chewing thoroughly), was obtained using a self-administered questionnaire, and height and weight were measured directly. Overweight was determined according to the definition established by the International Obesity Task Force. Data from 4027 subjects (2079 boys and 1948 girls) were analyzed. Chewing thoroughly was associated with a significantly decreased odds ratio (OR) for being overweight, whereas eating until full significantly increased the OR for being overweight (OR: 1.50, 95% confidence interval: 1.16–1.94) among boys. However, eating until full was not associated with a significantly increased OR for being overweight among the group that reported chewing thoroughly, whereas it was associated with a significantly increased OR for being overweight (2.02, 1.38–2.94) among boys who did not chew thoroughly. In conclusion, eating until full or not chewing thoroughly was associated with being overweight among elementary schoolchildren. Results of this study suggest that chewing thoroughly may be an avenue to explore childhood overweight prevention efforts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Parenting Styles and Home Obesogenic Environments
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1411-1426; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041411
Received: 4 January 2012 / Revised: 8 February 2012 / Accepted: 9 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 20 | PDF Full-text (326 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Parenting behaviors are known to have a major impact on childhood obesity but it has proven difficult to isolate the specific mechanism of influence. The present study uses Baumrind’s parenting typologies (authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive) to examine associations between parenting styles and parenting
[...] Read more.
Parenting behaviors are known to have a major impact on childhood obesity but it has proven difficult to isolate the specific mechanism of influence. The present study uses Baumrind’s parenting typologies (authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive) to examine associations between parenting styles and parenting practices associated with childhood obesity. Data were collected from a diverse sample of children (n = 182, ages 7–10) in an urban school district in the United States. Parenting behaviors were assessed with the Parenting Styles and Dimension Questionnaire (PSDQ), a 58-item survey that categorizes parenting practices into three styles: authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive. Parent perceptions of the home obesogenic environment were assessed with the Family Nutrition and Physical Activity (FNPA) instrument, a simple 10 item instrument that has been shown in previous research to predict risk for overweight. Cluster analyses were used to identify patterns in the PSDQ data and these clusters were related to FNPA scores and measured BMI values in children (using ANCOVA analyses that controlled for parent income and education) to examine the impact of parenting styles on risk of overweight/obesity. The FNPA score was positively (and significantly) associated with scores on the authoritative parenting scale (r = 0.29) but negatively (and significantly) associated with scores on the authoritarian scale (r = −0.22) and permissive scale (r = −0.20). Permissive parenting was significantly associated with BMIz score but this is the only dimension that exhibited a relationship with BMI. A three-cluster solution explained 40.5% of the total variance and clusters were distinguishable by low and high z-scores on different PSDQ sub-dimensions. A cluster characterized as Permissive/Authoritarian (Cluster 2) had significantly lower FNPA scores (more obesogenic) than clusters characterized as Authoritative (Cluster 1) or Authoritarian/Authoritative (Cluster 3) after controlling for family income and parent education. No direct effects of cluster were evident on the BMI outcomes but the patterns were consistent with the FNPA outcomes. The results suggest that a permissive parenting style is associated with more obesogenic environments while an authoritative parenting style is associated with less obesogenic environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Childhood Obesity among Puerto Rican Children: Discrepancies Between Child’s and Parent’s Perception of Weight Status
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1427-1437; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041427
Received: 3 February 2012 / Revised: 29 February 2012 / Accepted: 2 March 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (247 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Public concern about childhood obesity and associated health problems calls for the identification of modifiable factors that could halt this epidemic. Parental perceptions of their children’s weight status could be associated to how parents influence children’s eating patterns. We aimed to identify the
[...] Read more.
Public concern about childhood obesity and associated health problems calls for the identification of modifiable factors that could halt this epidemic. Parental perceptions of their children’s weight status could be associated to how parents influence children’s eating patterns. We aimed to identify the perceptions Puerto Rican parents have of their children’s weight and children’s own perceptions of weight status as compared to real weight. A cross sectional survey was performed in a representative sample of 1st–6th grade students. Only half of the children correctly identified their weight, and only 62.4% of the parents correctly classified their children’s weight. Most obese/overweight children did not perceive themselves as such. Almost half of obese/overweight children were identified by the parents as normal weight while over half of the underweight children were perceived by their parents at normal weight. More girls than boys perceived themselves as obese/overweight and more parents of girls than of boys perceived them as such. Higher-educated parents were better at recognizing overweight/obesity among their children compared to less-educated parents. This study suggests an influence of parents’ SES characteristics on their perceptions of children’s weight status as well as on children’s own perceptions of their weight status. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle The Influence of Local Food Environments on Adolescents’ Food Purchasing Behaviors
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1458-1471; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041458
Received: 8 February 2012 / Revised: 17 February 2012 / Accepted: 17 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 30 | PDF Full-text (296 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study examined the relationship between the neighborhood food environment and the food purchasing behaviors among adolescents. Grade 7 and 8 students (n = 810) at 21 elementary schools in London, Ontario, Canada completed a questionnaire assessing their food purchasing behaviors. Parents of
[...] Read more.
This study examined the relationship between the neighborhood food environment and the food purchasing behaviors among adolescents. Grade 7 and 8 students (n = 810) at 21 elementary schools in London, Ontario, Canada completed a questionnaire assessing their food purchasing behaviors. Parents of participants also completed a brief questionnaire providing residential address and demographic information. A Geographic Information System (GIS) was used to assess students’ home and school neighborhood food environment and land use characteristics. Logistic regression analysis was conducted to assess the influence of the home neighborhood food environment on students’ food purchasing behaviors, while two-level Hierarchical Non-Linear Regression Models were used to examine the effects of school neighborhood food environment factors on students’ food purchasing behaviors. The study showed that approximately 65% of participants reported self-purchasing foods from fast-food outlets or convenience stores. Close proximity (i.e., less than 1 km) to the nearest fast-food outlet or convenience store in the home neighborhood increased the likelihood of food purchasing from these food establishments at least once per week by adolescents (p < 0.05). High fast-food outlet density in both home and school neighborhoods was associated with increased fast-food purchasing by adolescents (i.e., at least once per week; p < 0.05). In conclusion, macro-level regulations and policies are required to amend the health-detracting neighborhood food environment surrounding children and youth’s home and school. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Socioeconomic Patterning of Childhood Overweight Status in Europe
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1472-1489; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041472
Received: 17 February 2012 / Revised: 8 March 2012 / Accepted: 16 March 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 29 | PDF Full-text (328 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There is growing evidence of social disparities in overweight among European children. This paper examines whether there is an association between socioeconomic inequality and prevalence of child overweight in European countries, and if socioeconomic disparities in child overweight are increasing. We analyse cross-country
[...] Read more.
There is growing evidence of social disparities in overweight among European children. This paper examines whether there is an association between socioeconomic inequality and prevalence of child overweight in European countries, and if socioeconomic disparities in child overweight are increasing. We analyse cross-country comparisons of household inequality and child overweight prevalence in Europe and review within-country variations over time of childhood overweight by social grouping, drawn from a review of the literature. Data from 22 European countries suggest that greater inequality in household income is positively associated with both self-reported and measured child overweight prevalence. Moreover, seven studies from four countries reported on the influence of socioeconomic factors on the distribution of child overweight over time. Four out of seven reported widening social disparities in childhood overweight, a fifth found statistically significant disparities only in a small sub-group, one found non-statistically significant disparities, and a lack of social gradient was reported in the last study. Where there is evidence of a widening social gradient in child overweight, it is likely that the changes in lifestyles and dietary habits involved in the increase in the prevalence of overweight have had a less favourable impact in low socio-economic status groups than in the rest of the population. More profound structural changes, based on population-wide social and environmental interventions are needed to halt the increasing social gradient in child overweight in current and future generations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Obesity, Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior Amongst British and Saudi Youth: A Cross-Cultural Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1490-1506; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041490
Received: 31 January 2012 / Revised: 1 March 2012 / Accepted: 2 March 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (331 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study explores differences in weight status, obesity and patterns of physical activity (PA) in relation to gender and age of youth from two culturally, environmentally and geographically diverse countries, the United Kingdom (UK) and Saudi Arabia (SA). A total of 2,290 males
[...] Read more.
This study explores differences in weight status, obesity and patterns of physical activity (PA) in relation to gender and age of youth from two culturally, environmentally and geographically diverse countries, the United Kingdom (UK) and Saudi Arabia (SA). A total of 2,290 males and females (15–17 years) volunteered to participate in this study. Participants completed a validated self-report questionnaire that contained 47 items relating to patterns of PA, sedentary activity and eating habits. The questionnaire allows the calculation of total energy expenditure in metabolic equivalent (MET-min) values per week. Significant differences in percentage of overweight/obese and levels of PA were evident between the youth from the two countries, with males being generally more physically active than females. Additionally, there were significant associations between Body Mass Index (BMI), PA and sedentary behaviors; the youth with higher BMI reported lower levels of PA and higher amounts of sedentary time. These findings highlight the diverse nature of lifestyle of youth living in different geographical areas of the world and the need for further research to explore the socio-cultural factors that impact on the prevalence of obesity and patterns of PA of youth in different populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessArticle Estimation of the Relative Severity of Floods in Small Ungauged Catchments for Preliminary Observations on Flash Flood Preparedness: A Case Study in Korea
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1507-1522; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041507
Received: 8 March 2012 / Revised: 31 March 2012 / Accepted: 6 April 2012 / Published: 18 April 2012
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (446 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
An increase in the occurrence of sudden local flooding of great volume and short duration has caused significant danger and loss of life and property in Korea as well as many other parts of the World. Since such floods usually accompanied by rapid
[...] Read more.
An increase in the occurrence of sudden local flooding of great volume and short duration has caused significant danger and loss of life and property in Korea as well as many other parts of the World. Since such floods usually accompanied by rapid runoff and debris flow rise quite quickly with little or no advance warning to prevent flood damage, this study presents a new flash flood indexing methodology to promptly provide preliminary observations regarding emergency preparedness and response to flash flood disasters in small ungauged catchments. Flood runoff hydrographs are generated from a rainfall-runoff model for the annual maximum rainfall series of long-term observed data in the two selected small ungauged catchments. The relative flood severity factors quantifying characteristics of flood runoff hydrographs are standardized by the highest recorded maximum value, and then averaged to obtain the flash flood index only for flash flood events in each study catchment. It is expected that the regression equations between the proposed flash flood index and rainfall characteristics can provide the basis database of the preliminary information for forecasting the local flood severity in order to facilitate flash flood preparedness in small ungauged catchments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Preparedness and Emergency Response)

Review

Jump to: Research, Other

Open AccessReview A Profile of Biomass Stove Use in Sri Lanka
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1097-1110; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041097
Received: 10 December 2011 / Revised: 20 February 2012 / Accepted: 19 March 2012 / Published: 27 March 2012
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (1199 KB) | XML Full-text
Abstract
A large body of evidence has confirmed that the indoor air pollution (IAP) from biomass fuel use is a major cause of premature deaths, and acute and chronic diseases. Over 78% of Sri Lankans use biomass fuel for cooking, the major source of
[...] Read more.
A large body of evidence has confirmed that the indoor air pollution (IAP) from biomass fuel use is a major cause of premature deaths, and acute and chronic diseases. Over 78% of Sri Lankans use biomass fuel for cooking, the major source of IAP in developing countries. We conducted a review of the available literature and data sources to profile biomass fuel use in Sri Lanka. We also produced two maps (population density and biomass use; and cooking fuel sources by district) to illustrate the problem in a geographical context. The biomass use in Sri Lanka is limited to wood while coal, charcoal, and cow dung are not used. Government data sources indicate poor residents in rural areas are more likely to use biomass fuel. Respiratory diseases, which may have been caused by cooking emissions, are one of the leading causes of hospitalizations and death. The World Health Organization estimated that the number of deaths attributable to IAP in Sri Lanka in 2004 was 4300. Small scale studies have been conducted in-country in an attempt to associate biomass fuel use with cataracts, low birth weight, respiratory diseases and lung cancer. However, the IAP issue has not been broadly researched and is not prominent in Sri Lankan public health policies and programs to date. Our profile of Sri Lanka calls for further analytical studies and new innovative initiatives to inform public health policy, advocacy and program interventions to address the IAP problem of Sri Lanka. Full article
Open AccessReview Suicide Methods in Asia: Implications in Suicide Prevention
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1135-1158; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041135
Received: 14 February 2012 / Revised: 13 March 2012 / Accepted: 20 March 2012 / Published: 28 March 2012
Cited by 32 | PDF Full-text (353 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
As the largest continent in the World, Asia accounts for about 60% of World suicides. Preventing suicide by restricting access to suicide methods is one of the few evidence-based suicide prevention strategies. However, there has been a lack of systematic exploration of suicide
[...] Read more.
As the largest continent in the World, Asia accounts for about 60% of World suicides. Preventing suicide by restricting access to suicide methods is one of the few evidence-based suicide prevention strategies. However, there has been a lack of systematic exploration of suicide methods in Asian countries. To amend this shortage, the current review examines the leading suicide methods in different Asian countries, their trend, their age- and sex- specific characteristics, and their implications for suicide prevention. In total, 42 articles with leading suicide methods data in 17 Asian countries/regions were retrieved. The epidemiologic characteristics and recent trends of common suicide methods reflect specific socio-cultural, economic, and religious situations in the region. Common suicide methods shift with the introduction of technologies and constructions, and have specific age- or sex-characteristics that may render the restriction of suicide methods not equally effective for all sex and age sub-groups. Charcoal burning, pesticide poisoning, native plant poisoning, self-immolation, and jumping are all prominent examples. In the information society, suicide prevention that focuses on suicide methods must monitor and control the innovation and spread of knowledge and practices of suicide “technologies”. It may be more cost-effective to design safety into technologies as a way of suicide prevention while there is no rash of suicides yet by the new technologies. Further research on suicide methods is important for public health approaches to suicide prevention with sensitivity to socio-cultural, economic, and religious factors in different countries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Suicide Prevention and Public Health)
Open AccessReview Can We Modify the Intrauterine Environment to Halt the Intergenerational Cycle of Obesity?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1263-1307; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041263
Received: 25 January 2012 / Revised: 24 February 2012 / Accepted: 27 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 44 | PDF Full-text (2406 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Child obesity is a global epidemic whose development is rooted in complex and multi-factorial interactions. Once established, obesity is difficult to reverse and epidemiological, animal model, and experimental studies have provided strong evidence implicating the intrauterine environment in downstream obesity. This review focuses
[...] Read more.
Child obesity is a global epidemic whose development is rooted in complex and multi-factorial interactions. Once established, obesity is difficult to reverse and epidemiological, animal model, and experimental studies have provided strong evidence implicating the intrauterine environment in downstream obesity. This review focuses on the interplay between maternal obesity, gestational weight gain and lifestyle behaviours, which may act independently or in combination, to perpetuate the intergenerational cycle of obesity. The gestational period, is a crucial time of growth, development and physiological change in mother and child. This provides a window of opportunity for intervention via maternal nutrition and/or physical activity that may induce beneficial physiological alternations in the fetus that are mediated through favourable adaptations to in utero environmental stimuli. Evidence in the emerging field of epigenetics suggests that chronic, sub-clinical perturbations during pregnancy may affect fetal phenotype and long-term human data from ongoing randomized controlled trials will further aid in establishing the science behind ones predisposition to positive energy balance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessReview Physical Activity Promotion in the Preschool Years: A Critical Period to Intervene
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1326-1342; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041326
Received: 1 February 2012 / Revised: 13 March 2012 / Accepted: 22 March 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 40 | PDF Full-text (258 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The primary aim of this paper is to provide a rationale for the necessity of intervening with a physical activity intervention in the preschool years and why the daycare environment is amenable to such intervention. We also review the prevalence of physical activity,
[...] Read more.
The primary aim of this paper is to provide a rationale for the necessity of intervening with a physical activity intervention in the preschool years and why the daycare environment is amenable to such intervention. We also review the prevalence of physical activity, sedentary behaviour and obesity in the preschool population and the impact that these lifestyle behaviours and conditions have on the health of preschool aged children, as secondary objectives. Moreover we discuss implications for intervention and research using a “lessons learned” model based on our research team’s experience of conducting a randomized controlled trial aimed at increasing physical activity, reducing sedentary behaviour and improving motor skill development and body composition in preschoolers. Lastly, we make conclusions based on the literature and highlight issues and directions that need to be addressed in future research in order to maximize health promotion and chronic disease prevention in the pediatric population. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Open AccessReview After-School Based Obesity Prevention Interventions: A Comprehensive Review of the Literature
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1438-1457; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041438
Received: 4 January 2012 / Revised: 6 February 2012 / Accepted: 8 February 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 15 | PDF Full-text (253 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The purpose of this article was to review primary prevention interventions targeting childhood obesity implemented in the after school environment from 2006 and 2011. A total of 20 interventions were found from 25 studies. Children in the interventions ranged from kindergarten to middle
[...] Read more.
The purpose of this article was to review primary prevention interventions targeting childhood obesity implemented in the after school environment from 2006 and 2011. A total of 20 interventions were found from 25 studies. Children in the interventions ranged from kindergarten to middle schoolers, however a majority was in the 4th and 5th grades. Most of the interventions targeted both physical activity and dietary behaviors. Among those that focused on only one dimension, physical activity was targeted more than diet. The duration of the interventions greatly varied, but many were short-term or brief. Many interventions were also based on some behavioral theory, with social cognitive theory as the most widely used. Most of the interventions focused on short-term changes, and rarely did any perform a follow-up evaluation. A major limitation among after school interventions was an inadequate use of process evaluations. Overall, interventions resulted in modest changes in behaviors and behavioral antecedents, and results were mixed and generally unfavorable with regards to indicators of obesity. Recommendations for enhancing the effectiveness of after school based childhood obesity interventions are presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)

Other

Jump to: Research, Review

Open AccessMeeting Report Early Origins of Child Obesity: Bridging Disciplines and Phases of Development - September 30–October 1, 2010
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(4), 1227-1262; doi:10.3390/ijerph9041227
Received: 27 October 2011 / Accepted: 26 March 2012 / Published: 16 April 2012
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (493 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This report summarizes a conference: “Early Origins of Child Obesity: Bridging Disciplines and Phases of Development”, held in Chicago on September 30–October 1, 2010. The conference was funded in part by the National Institutes of Health and the Williams Heart Foundation, to achieve
[...] Read more.
This report summarizes a conference: “Early Origins of Child Obesity: Bridging Disciplines and Phases of Development”, held in Chicago on September 30–October 1, 2010. The conference was funded in part by the National Institutes of Health and the Williams Heart Foundation, to achieve the conference objective: forging a next-step research agenda related to the early origins of childhood obesity. This research agenda was to include working with an array of factors (from genetic determinants to societal ones) along a continuum from prenatal life to age 7, with an emphasis on how the developing child deals with the challenges presented by his/her environment (prenatal, parental, nutritional, etc.). The conference offered a unique opportunity to facilitate communication and planning of future work among a variety of researchers whose work separately addresses different periods in early life. Over the span of two days, speakers addressed existing, critical research topics within each of the most-studied age ranges. On the final day, workshops fostered the discussion needed to identify the highest priority research topics related to linking varied early factor domains. These are presented for use in planning future research and research funding. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Childhood Obesity: Prevention and Treatment)
Figures

Journal Contact

MDPI AG
IJERPH Editorial Office
St. Alban-Anlage 66, 4052 Basel, Switzerland
ijerph@mdpi.com
Tel. +41 61 683 77 34
Fax: +41 61 302 89 18
Editorial Board
Contact Details Submit to IJERPH
Back to Top