Scientists recently discovered an unsettling connection between sports and energy drinks and teenagers. There appears to be a pretty strong link between consumption of the beverage to bad behavior, according to a recent research study published in the Journal of Nutritional Education and Behavior. And while it may not be a surprise that kids hopped up on caffeine might misbehave more than those who stay clear of Redbull and the like, the same trend applies to sports drinks, which were used by about 33-percent of the teens polled.
What, exactly, are kids who drink these beverages up to? The researchers concluded that both male and female teenagers who consume a high number of sports and energy drinks each week are more likely to smoke, drink other worse-for-you beverages, and actually spend more time in front of the computer or television.
Could Gatorade be the gateway drug for more bad behavior? (more…)
If Cookie Monster is the poster-puppet for junk food, Colby Carrot and the rest of the Super Sprowtz are the health food equivalents, and they’re fighting a good fight. Through television programing, live shows, and a museum exhibit as well as online tools and an app, these veggie super-hero characters teach kids about healthy eating—and they make it fun!
What other vegetables are represented in this zany cast?
Getting our kids to bed can be one of the biggest battles of parenthood. The issue starts from day one and really never ends until they’re adults. An interesting new study shows why some small children may not be getting the amount sleep they need for optimum health. The culprit may be in the form of a masked hero.
Katie Moisse reported for ABC News concerning a sleep-related study that was published in the journal Pediatrics. The study revealed that among the 565 preschool-age children whose sleep habits were monitored, those who were only allowed to watch age-appropriate educational television were less likely to have sleep issues than those who were allowed to watch programs with fighting superheroes or other rambunctious scenes intended for an older audience.
Moisse interviewed the author of the study, Michelle Garrison from the Seattle Children’s Research Institute. Garrison explained theories about these findings, one major hypothesis being that children exposed to less violence may suffer fewer nightmares and find it easier to fall asleep.
Previous studies back up Garrison and her team’s theories, as there have been numerous links to violence and poor sleep patterns in the past. Poor sleep can also raise a child’s risk of behavioral and emotional problems. (more…)
Not only does too much homework negatively affect students’ test scores, but new research suggests that even an hour or two of homework each night gives no measurable advantages to students before they enter grades 10 through 12. Sydney University’s Richard Walker headed up the study outlined in his new book “Reforming Homework: Practices, Learning and Policies.”
According to the study, students in elementary school get limited benefits from homework, while middle schoolers get slightly more. It’s not until high school that academic performance becomes enhanced with homework. Even then, too much homework can lead to poor mental and physical health. A lack of sleep is one cause of this, with one study linking sleep deficiencies in teens to obesity. A lack of sleep can also lead to diabetes, another study found. (more…)
Diabetes used to be a concern primarily for the older population. But now, the reality is that kids are at a high risk of developing the disease, too. And even more alarming is that there’s currently no one pill that’s been proven to treat the condition.
More kids have Type 2 diabetes now than ever before. And the main cause of this is childhood obesity – it’s all linked together. In fact, according to a recent article from NPR, more than half of new cases of diabetes are now Type 2 compared with just 3 percent a few decades back.
Type 2 diabetes, once called adult-onset and non-insulin dependent diabetes, is a chronic condition that affects the way your body metabolizes glucose and sugar. With the condition, the body still produces insulin – a hormone that regulates the absorption of sugar into our cells – but the body has either become resistant to its effects or cannot produce enough insulin to maintain a normal glucose level. Left uncontrolled, the consequences of type 2 diabetes can be fatal.
Treating diabetes in children specifically is becoming a growing issue, especially since recent research has shown medications can only do so much. (more…)