Background: We evaluated the changes in lifestyle during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in a sample of children and adolescents in order to assess any increase in risk factors for the onset of cardiovascular diseases in later ages. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study involving 965 parents who completed an online survey about dietary habits and lifestyle during the first lockdown in Italy (from 9 March 2020 to 18 May 2020) and compared their findings with the period before the pandemic. The inclusion criteria were parents (or caregivers) with Italian residency and with children aged between 5 and 18 years. Results: We identified 563 adolescents and 402 children. The mean age was 12.28 years (SD 3.754). The pandemic was associated with an increase in the consumption of high-calorie snack foods. The total amount of food in homes during lockdown compared with before the pandemic increased 50%. Relating to the parent-perceived child weight status, more parents reported obesity in their children after lockdown (+0.6% in the 5-11 age group and +0.2% in the 12-18 age group). We reported a reduction of physical activity, an increase of sedentary lifestyle and sleep habits changes. Conclusion: The COVID 19 pandemic was associated with changes in the lifestyles of children and adolescents; this could cause an increase in the incidence of obesity and of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases in adulthood.

Children and Adolescents Dietary Habits and Lifestyle Changes during COVID-19 Lockdown in Italy

Farello, Giovanni
Conceptualization
;
Altobelli, Emma
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Balsano, Clara
Membro del Collaboration Group
2022

Abstract

Background: We evaluated the changes in lifestyle during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in a sample of children and adolescents in order to assess any increase in risk factors for the onset of cardiovascular diseases in later ages. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study involving 965 parents who completed an online survey about dietary habits and lifestyle during the first lockdown in Italy (from 9 March 2020 to 18 May 2020) and compared their findings with the period before the pandemic. The inclusion criteria were parents (or caregivers) with Italian residency and with children aged between 5 and 18 years. Results: We identified 563 adolescents and 402 children. The mean age was 12.28 years (SD 3.754). The pandemic was associated with an increase in the consumption of high-calorie snack foods. The total amount of food in homes during lockdown compared with before the pandemic increased 50%. Relating to the parent-perceived child weight status, more parents reported obesity in their children after lockdown (+0.6% in the 5-11 age group and +0.2% in the 12-18 age group). We reported a reduction of physical activity, an increase of sedentary lifestyle and sleep habits changes. Conclusion: The COVID 19 pandemic was associated with changes in the lifestyles of children and adolescents; this could cause an increase in the incidence of obesity and of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases in adulthood.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11697/188492
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