Intended for healthcare professionals


Physical activity to prevent obesity in young children

BMJ 2006; 333 doi: (Published 30 November 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;333:1171

BMI in the BMJ

  1. Daniel J Green (,
  2. Tim Cable, professor
  1. 1Research Institute for Sport and Exercise Sciences, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool L3 2ET

Reilly et al entitle their article, “Physical activity to prevent obesity …” and conclude, “Alternative interventions [to physical activity] to prevent obesity in young children are required.”1 The emphasis on a lack of impact of physical activity on obesity is unfortunate for four reasons.

Firstly, the independent variable was not successfully manipulated: the intervention failed to generate differences in physical activity or sedentary behaviour between groups. Why would one expect a “physical activity intervention” which has no impact on physical activity to alter energy balance or “obesity”? …

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