Associations between obesity and cognition in the pre-school years

Martin, A. , Booth, J. N., Young, D., Revie, M., Boyter, A. C., Johnston, B., Tomporowski, P. D. and Reilly, J. J. (2016) Associations between obesity and cognition in the pre-school years. Obesity, 24(1), pp. 207-214. (doi:10.1002/oby.21329) (PMID:26638123)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.

Abstract

Objective: To test the hypothesis that obesity is associated with impaired cognitive outcomes in the pre-school years. Methods: Associations were examined between weight status at age 3-5 years and cognitive performance at age 5 years. Cognitive outcome measures were tests of pattern construction (visuospatial skills), naming vocabulary (expressive language skills), and picture similarity (reasoning skills). The sample was the UK Millennium Cohort Study (n = 12,349 participants). Results: Boys with obesity at 3 years had significantly lower performance in pattern construction at age 5 years compared to those of a healthy weight, even after controlling for confounders (β = −0.029, P = 0.03). Controlling for confounders, boys who developed obesity between the ages of 3 and 5 years had lower scores in pattern construction (β = −0.03, P = 0.03). “Growing out” of obesity had a positive association with picture similarity performance in girls (β = 0.03, P = 0.04). Conclusions: Obesity in the pre-school years was associated with poorer outcomes for some cognitive measures in this study. Stronger relationships between obesity and cognition or educational attainment may emerge later in childhood.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Martin, Dr Anne
Authors: Martin, A., Booth, J. N., Young, D., Revie, M., Boyter, A. C., Johnston, B., Tomporowski, P. D., and Reilly, J. J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Obesity
Publisher:Wiley
ISSN:1930-7381
ISSN (Online):1930-739X
Published Online:05 December 2015

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record