Central adiposity and the propensity for rehearsal in children
Fiona CM Ling, Rich SW Masters, Clare CW Yu, Alison M McManus
Institute of Human Performance, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong
Background: There is increasing evidence that continuous activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal axis and the central sympathetic nervous system contributes to the pathogenesis of central adiposity via increased psychological stress. The purpose of this study was to examine the link between central adiposity and the propensity for Chinese children to rehearse emotionally upsetting events, a dimension of psychological stress. Additionally, gender differences in this relationship were explored.
Methods: Waist circumference, which is a marker of central adiposity and associated risks of developing cardiovascular disease, was measured and the propensity for rehearsal was assessed twice over two consecutive years in Hong Kong Chinese children (n = 194, aged 7–9 years), using a psychometric tool.
Results: Children with waist circumference indicative of a risk of cardiovascular disease displayed higher rehearsal scores than children categorized as “not at risk”, as did boys compared with girls. Our results suggest that central adiposity and the propensity for rehearsal of emotionally upsetting events may be linked in Chinese children.
Conclusion: Future prospective studies examining the direction of causality between central adiposity and rehearsal can potentially have valuable clinical implications.
Keywords: obesity, abdominal, stress, psychological, Hong Kong, child
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