Study: Lack of sleep a factor in childhood obesity

(WISH Photo, file)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Doctors at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health are shedding more light on a recent study on obesity and how sleep can be a major factor, especially in kids.

The study comes from the American Academy of Pediatrics. The academy followed 1,000 children and found that kids who did not get enough sleep were more likely to be obese.

Doctors say this happens the most among 7 year olds.

The head of the sleep disorder center at Riley says people of all age groups do not understand how much sleep a person needs.

“They only need five hours of sleep a night. It’s not an achievement. You’re shortchanging yourself in many ways,” Dr. Deborah Givan, Pediatric Pulmonologist and Medical Director for Sleep Disorders Center at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health said. “Then we kind of project that on to our children by over-scheduling them, over-scheduling ourselves, and then we end up with problems and that is certainly not surprising.”

Doctors say children up to 2 years old get at least 12 hours of sleep each day. They say 3 and 4 year olds should sleep for at least 11 hours.

Children 5 to 7 years old should get about 10 hours of sleep. Doctors say kids older than 7 should get around nine hours. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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