KIMURA Misaka Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, School of Nursing, professor, 医学部・看護学科, 教授 (90150573)
MORIMOTO Taketoshi Kobe Women's Junior College, President, professor, 総合生活学科, 元学長・教授 (30079694)
[Introduction] In this study, the states of obesity, physical activities, and diet of 4th-6th graders were examined in an agricultural area of the Tohoku district, where most pupils were driven to and from school. The physique (height, weight, BMI), physical activity level (pedometer with an acceleration sensor ; Kenz), and nutritional intake (calculated with Wellness21, Top-Business) were investigated in 226 elementary school pupils during a 7-day period including 2 or 3 holydays in fall.
[Results] The percentage of obese children was higher than the national average. After school, the pupils spent the longest time in watching TV, followed by playing outside. Most of them were driven to school and back home, and the mean time of walking to and back from school was 4 minutes. The mean number of steps of daily walking was 13,075 in the males and 10,235 in the females, but it decreased on holidays to about 60% of the numbers on weekdays. A significant correlation was observed between the
activity index and the number of steps of walking, and the numbers of steps that correspond to a relatively low activity level (AI 1.5) and an appropriate activity level (AI 1.7) were estimated to be 13,665 and 22,438, respectively. Their diet was characterized by marked deficiency of iron and calcium, high intakes of meat and sweets, and low intakes of vegetables and fruits. A smaller percent of overweight children practiced sports than normal weight children.
[Conclusions] The following characteristics were observed in the subjects of this study : 1) a high percentage of obese children, 2) inadequacy of the number of walking steps, and 3) a lower percentage of obese children participating in sports activities than non-obese children. Therefore, an increase in the physical activity level is considered to be necessary for the prevention of obesity. For this purpose, in addition to administrative measures to increase exercise opportunities in the community such as the establishment of a general sports club, actions such as encouraging pupils to walk to school are considered to be effective. Less