The University of Missouri released the results of a study they recently conducted with 6,250 young children and their families. The study showed, maybe for the first time, a direct link between obese children and poor math performance. Yikes!
The study leader, Sara Gable, said that “our study suggests that childhood obesity, especially obesity that persists throughout the elementary school grades can harm children’s social and emotional well-being, as well as academic performance.”
The relationship between a child’s weight, their social and emotional well-being and their academic performance is complex, to be sure. But this study found there was a relationship. For boys, having fewer social skills may explain part of their poorer math performance. For girls, feeling sadder, lonelier and more anxious may also play a factor.
The study also showed that when children first experience obesity and how long it lasts have an impact on math performance too. Children who began their obesity challenge at a very early age performed worse on math tests in all grades. The good news is that it seems the affects can be reversible, if parents catch it early enough and take action.
These new findings make it even more important to ensure that kids eat healthy and exercise regularly. Weight issues can be addressed and a person’s health improved over time, but “catching up” in academics may be difficult.
What do you think? Have you seen an example of how obesity can negatively influence academics?
Remember, healthy choices you make each day can transform your family for generations! What choices will you make today?
Do You Wish Your Kid’s Ate Better? Check out our FREE eBook at www.HealthFamilyFuture.com. Many of the strategies in this book can be used by both children and adults.
You may also want to read: No More Junk Food for Disney – at Least on TV, Childhood Obesity: Reversing the Trend is a Group Effort, Healthy Kids = Healthy Adults