Abstract P304: Asthma-Obesity Association Impact on Children’s Physical Activities
Background: children attending hospital clinics for asthma are more likely to be obese and are significantly less active than children with other medical conditions. Asthma is identified as a barrier to exercise by children and parents. Plans to encourage exercise within children asthma community are needed to protect children’s physical health.
Objective: The aim of the study is to explore the nature of the relationship between asthma and obesity and the impact of that association on children’s physical activities.
Methods: This is a cross sectional observational study of children (7-12 years) who were recruited from outpatient physician clinics. Body mass index percentile (BMI %) is used to assess children’s weight, parent report of their child’s asthma diagnosis and severity of symptoms is used to assess asthma. Asthma severity is defined by the FEV1 value from a pulmonary function test during the visit and parent report. Children’s level of physical activity is assessed with assigned Metabolic Equivalent of Task (MET) scores for reported weekly activities. Participants are divided into four groups: asthmatics and overweight or obese, non-asthmatics and overweight or obese, non-asthmatics and non-overweight or non-obese, and asthmatics and non-overweight or non-obese.
Results: A total of 132 children have been recruited into the study; 40 children have complete physical activity data at this time. 59% of the sample is males. The majority of the sample is Caucasian (84%). 45% (59) of participants are asthmatic; 22 of this group presented with moderate to severe asthma. 28 (21%) children are overweight or obese; 79% are of healthy weight. Out of the 40 children, 5 are asthmatics and overweight or obese, 10 are non-asthmatics and overweight or obese, 14 are non-asthmatics and non-overweight or non-obese, and 11 are asthmatics and non-overweight or non-obese. Severe and moderate asthmatic participants tend to have lower MET scores (X = 33 and 38, respectively) compared to mild asthmatic MET scores (X = 86). Overweight and obese children also tend to have lower MET scores (x = 55) than healthy weight (x = 63). When combined, obese, non-asthmatic children have the lowest MET score (x = 55) while non-obese, asthmatics have the highest MET score (x = 64).
Conclusion: Obesity has more profound impact on children’s activities than asthma alone. Effective ways to control children’s asthma and weight risks may help children exercise more and improve their quality of life.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.