Physical Activity as Treatment for Obesity
The last two decades has seen a dramatic increase in the prevalence of overweight and obesity among all segments of the US population, including children, adolescents, and adults (Ogden, Carroll, & Flegal, 2008). While these increases have been observed across the population, ethnic minority groups have been impacted differentially (Ogden et al., 2008). Given the increased prevalence of obesity, considerable attention has been focused on models of intervention for this challenging concern. This chapter focuses on the role of physical activity in the treatment of obesity, with an emphasis on interventions with pediatric samples. In particular, we provide an overview of pediatric obesity treatment approaches, discuss the potential mechanisms through which physical activity impacts outcome, present a review of interventions that include manipulation of physical activity, and conclude with recommendations for best practices and future research directions. While our focus is on the importance of physical activity for pediatric weight control, a number of concepts are illustrated through research conducted with adults. The reader is referred to several excellent reviews for consideration of physical activity as a component of weight control interventions for adults (Donnelly et al., 2009; Jakicic, 2006).
KeywordsPhysical Activity Resistance Training Sedentary Behavior Weight Control Screen Time
- Baker, C. W., & Brownell, K. D. (2000). Physical activity and maintenance of weight loss: Physiological and psychological mechanisms. In B. Christopher (Ed.), Physical activity and obesity (pp. 311–328). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.Google Scholar
- DeBate, R. D., Baldwin, J. A., Thompson, Z., Nickelson, J., Alfonso, M. L., Bryant, C. A., et al. (2009). VERB TM Summer Scorecard: Findings from a multi-level community-based physical activity intervention for tweens. American Journal of Community Psychology, 44, 363–373.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Donnelly, J. E., Blair, S. N., Jakicic, J. M., Manore, M. M., Rankin, J. W., & Smith, B. K. (2009). American College of Sports Medicine Position Stand. Appropriate physical activity intervention strategies for weight loss and prevention of weight regain for adults. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 41, 459–471.PubMedGoogle Scholar
- Epstein, L. H., Paluch, R. A., Gordy, C. C., & Dorn, J. (2000). Decreasing sedentary behaviors in treating pediatric obesity. Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 154, 220–226.Google Scholar
- Epstein, L. H., Roemmich, J. N., Robinson, J. L., Paluch, R. A., Winiewicz, D. D., Fuerch, J. H., et al. (2008). A randomized trial of the effects of reducing television viewing and computer use on body mass index in young children. Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 162, 239–245.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Faith, M. S., Leone, M. A., Ayers, T. S., Heo, M., & Pietrobelli, A. (2002). Weight criticism during physical activity, coping skills, and reported physical activity in children. Pediatrics, 110, e23. Retrieved May 12, 2010 from http://www.pediatrics.org/cgi/content/full/110/2/e23.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Goldfield, G. S., Raynor, H. A., & Epstein, L. H. (2002). Treatment of pediatric obesity. In T. A. Wadden & A. J. Stunkard (Eds.), Handbook of obesity treatment (pp. 232–555). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
- Jakicic, J. M., Wing, R. R., Butler, B. A., & Robertson, R. J. (1995). Prescribing exercise in multiple short bouts versus one continuous bout: Effects on adherence, cardiorespiratory fitness, and weight loss in overweight women. International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, 19, 893–901.PubMedGoogle Scholar
- Jelalian, E., Lloyd-Richardson, E. E., Mehlenbeck, R. S., Hart, C. N., Flynn-O’Brien, K., Kaplan, J., et al. (2010). Behavioral weight control treatment with supervised exercise or peer-enhanced adventure for overweight adolescents. The Journal of Pediatrics, 157(6), 923–928.Google Scholar
- Karelis, A. D., Fontaine, J., Messier, V., Messier, L., Blanchard, C., Rabasa-Lhoret, R., et al. (2008). Psychosocial correlates of cardiorespiratory fitness and muscle strength in overweight and obese post-menopausal women: A MONET study. Journal of Sports Sciences, 26, 935–940.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Mata, J., Silva, M. N., Vieira, P. N., Carraca, E. V., Andrade, A. M., Coutinho, S. R., et al. (2009). Motivational “spill-over” during weight control: Increased self-determination and exercise intrinsic motivation predict eating self-regulation. Health Psychology, 28, 709–716.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Oude Luttikhuis, H., Baur, L., Jansen, H., Shrewsbury, V. A., O’Malley, C., Strolk, R. P., et al. (2009). Interventions for treating obesity in children. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD001872. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD001872.pub2.
- Strath, S. J., Holleman, R. G., Ronis, D. L., Swartz, A. M., & Richardson, C. R. (2008). Objective physical activity accumulation in bouts and nonbouts and relation to markers of obesity in US adults. Preventing Chronic Disease, 5(4), A131. Retrieved May 5, 2010 from http://www.cdc.gov/pcd/issues/2008/oct/07_0158.htm.PubMedGoogle Scholar