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The Relationship of Eating Rate and Degree of Chewing to Body Weight Status among Preschool Children in Japan: A Nationwide Cross-Sectional Study

1
Department of Health Promotion, National Institute of Public Health, Saitama 351-0197, Japan
2
Department of Social and Preventive Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Tokyo, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan
3
Ikurien-Naka, Ibaraki 311-0105, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(1), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11010064
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 10 December 2018 / Accepted: 24 December 2018 / Published: 29 December 2018
There is growing recognition that eating slowly is associated with a lower risk of obesity, and chewing well might be an effective way to reduce the eating rate. However, little is known about these relationships among children. We therefore investigated the associations of eating rate and chewing degree with weight status among 4451 Japanese children aged 5–6 years. Information on eating rate (slow, medium, or fast), degree of chewing (not well, medium, or well), and nutrient intake of children were collected from guardians using a diet history questionnaire. Weight status was defined using the International Obesity Task Force cut-offs based on BMI calculated from guardian-reported height and weight. The prevalence of overweight and thinness was 10.4% and 14.3%, respectively. A higher eating rate and a lower degree of chewing were associated with being overweight (both p < 0.001). Eating slowly was associated with being thin (p < 0.001), but no association was observed between chewing degree and thinness. These associations were still evident after controlling for potential confounders including parental educational attainment, weight status, and the child’s nutrient intake. In conclusion, this cross-sectional study suggested that chewing well, rather than eating slowly, might be a more effective way for healthy weight management among Japanese preschool children. View Full-Text
Keywords: rate of eating; degree of chewing; weight status; cross-sectional study; preschool children rate of eating; degree of chewing; weight status; cross-sectional study; preschool children
MDPI and ACS Style

Okubo, H.; Murakami, K.; Masayasu, S.; Sasaki, S. The Relationship of Eating Rate and Degree of Chewing to Body Weight Status among Preschool Children in Japan: A Nationwide Cross-Sectional Study. Nutrients 2019, 11, 64. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11010064

AMA Style

Okubo H, Murakami K, Masayasu S, Sasaki S. The Relationship of Eating Rate and Degree of Chewing to Body Weight Status among Preschool Children in Japan: A Nationwide Cross-Sectional Study. Nutrients. 2019; 11(1):64. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11010064

Chicago/Turabian Style

Okubo, Hitomi, Kentaro Murakami, Shizuko Masayasu, and Satoshi Sasaki. 2019. "The Relationship of Eating Rate and Degree of Chewing to Body Weight Status among Preschool Children in Japan: A Nationwide Cross-Sectional Study" Nutrients 11, no. 1: 64. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11010064

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