Home » Archive » Volume 14 (2023) » Issue No.1 » Sleep duration and childhood obesity. An association with lifestyle habits

Sleep duration and childhood obesity. An association with lifestyle habits

Konstantina Morogianni1, Aikaterini Kanellopoulou1, Dimosthenis B. Panagiotakos1,2

  1. Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Health Sciences & Education, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece
  2. Faculty of Health, University of Canberra, ACT, Australia

Pages: 56-66


Aims: Over the last decades, childhood obesity has been a crucial public health threat worldwide. In the meantime, insufficient sleep has become commonplace among children. A large body of research indicates that sleep duration is linked to children’s weight status. Thus, the aim of the present work was to review the current evidence regarding the potential underlying mechanisms (i.e. biological and behavioural)
involved in the association between sleep duration and childhood obesity.

Methods: A literature search of studies published between January 2010 and January 2020 was conducted. PubMed data base was searched, using combinations of keywords. Only studies concerning school-aged children (6-18 years of age) were considered.

Results: Twenty three studies were included. All evidence demonstrated an association between short sleep duration and less beneficial diet quality, like consuming snacks and soda regularly. Sleep restriction was found to be raising the odds of being overweight/ obese by 21% to 58%. Plus, excess screen time is associated with a lower sleep duration. With respect to physical activity, both short and long sleep were found to be associated with less active lifestyle among children.

Conclusions: This review showed an association between sleep and childhood obesity. Sleep also seems to be related to many aspects of children’s lifestyle which probably contribute to weight regulation. Public health efforts that encourage c


Download full article in pdf