Lifestyle Behaviors and Cardiometabolic Health in Middle-School Children.

Academic Article


  • Background: Lifestyle behaviors (LB), defined by diet and physical activity, are associated with cardiometabolic health among adults. The association of LB with cardiometabolic health among middle-school children is uncertain. Methods: An abbreviated version of the School Physical Activity and Nutrition survey was used to examine LB among students participating in a wellness program between 2004 and 2018. Students were incorporated into three groups determined by self-reported healthy LB (≥6, 4-5, ≤3 behaviors), including; ≤1 serving/day sugary foods/beverages; ≤1 serving/day fried/fatty foods; ≥1 serving/day fruits and vegetables; ≤2 hours of screen time/day; ≥1 day/week of physical education; ≥1 team sport/year; and ≥1 session/week of moderate to vigorous activity. Baseline cardiometabolic parameters [BMI, lipids, glucose, and blood pressure (BP)], resting heart rate (HR), and HR recovery were examined in association with LB groups. Results: Of 2538 children, 488 (19.2%) reported ≥6, 1219 (48.0%) reported 4-5, and 831 (32.7%) reported ≤3 LB. White or Asian race and higher socioeconomic status were associated with ≥6 LB (p < 0.001). Students performing ≤3 LB exhibited higher BMI (p < 0.001), BP (p = 0.001), resting HR (p < 0.001), and HR recovery (p < 0.001). Students performing ≥6 LB were less likely to be overweight (p < 0.001), obese (p < 0.001), or have low high-density lipoprotein (p = 0.05); however, more likely to have elevated triglycerides (p < 0.01). Conclusions: Among middle-school students, baseline BMI, BP, resting, and recovery HR were higher among children reporting fewer healthy LB. Students performing more healthy LB were less likely to be overweight or obese. Efforts to improve LB among middle-school children may be important for primordial cardiovascular prevention efforts.
  • Published In

  • Childhood Obesity  Journal
  • Keywords

  • adolescent, cardiometabolic health, cardiovascular risk, health behavior
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Sang Iii CJ; Song X; de Visser RSF; Krallman R; Montgomery D; Pai C-W; Kline-Rogers E; DuRussel-Weston J; Eagle KA; Jackson EA