Consumption of vegetables, cooked meals, and eating dinner is negatively associated with overweight status in children.
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OBJECTIVE: To evaluate potential associations between diet- and physical activity-related lifestyle patterns and obesity indices in a cohort of children.
STUDY DESIGN: Dietary and physical activity information and anthropometric indices were collected from 1138 children (53% girls; age, 11.2 ± 0.7 years). Dietary intake was evaluated with two 24-hour recalls, which were analyzed for nutrient and food intake, eating frequency, and meal quality. Principal component analysis was used to extract salient lifestyle patterns.
RESULTS: Five lifestyle behavioral patterns were identified. The « dinner, cooked meals and vegetables pattern, » a multidimensional lifestyle pattern including the consumption of vegetables, cooked meals, and eating dinner, was negatively associated with all obesity indices, even after adjustment for potential confounders and exclusion of low energy reporters. A « high fiber pattern, » representing high consumption of whole-grain cereals, legumes, and low intake of sugar-sweetened beverages was negatively correlated with obesity indices; when the analysis included only acceptable energy reporters, these associations became non-significant, except for triceps skinfolds.
CONCLUSIONS: Our findings are supportive of the synergistic or conditional effects of distinct lifestyle-related behaviors on obesity. Although these results are hypothesis-generating and need replication, they suggest potential preventive approaches, interventional approaches, or both to combat childhood obesity.