Wednesday, July 02, 2008

It Ain't About Gym Class

If figuratively beating a dead horse actually counted as exercise I'd likely be one of the fittest guys in the world.

Here's yet another story on gym class and how the school based energy-out component of pediatric obesity is not in fact particularly important.

The story's about Dr. Kevin Harris, a pediatric resident at B.C. Children's Hospital who presented his findings on gym class' ability to change BMI. Dr. Harris and his fellow researchers looked at 13 trials of 6 months to 3 years duration involving over 10,000 children.

His quote says it all:

"Phys-ed and physical activity are tremendously important but this research shows phys-ed doesn't change BMI. So while the overall health benefits are established, phys-ed shouldn't be looked at as a central component of any obesity strategy"
Hmmm, if energy-out interventions don't help, what else could we try?

Do you think that maybe, just maybe, it's time to look at the energy-in?

UPDATE: Kevin's work has now been published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. Click here to read his study.