Friday, August 6, 2010

Proximity to Food an Issue in Weight Gain?


Dorm With Cafeteria May
Boost College Weight Gain

TUESDAY, Aug. 3 (HealthDay News) -- College
students who live in dormitories with dining halls
gain more weight than students who have to walk
farther for their meals, a new study has found.

The study included 388 freshmen in seven dorms,
including four that had on-site dining halls that
served three meals daily. All the students had access
to two campus gyms with state-of-the-art exercise
equipment.

During the school year, females in dorms with on-
site dining halls weighed almost 2 pounds more
and exercised 1.43 fewer times per week than those
in dorms without dining halls. Males in dorms with
on-site dining halls ate about 1.5 more meals and
almost three more snacks per week than those in
dorms without dining halls, according to the report
released online Aug. 3 in the Journal of Adolescent
Health.

While living closer to a gym increased exercise
frequency among female students, there was no
proof that the distance they lived from a gym
affected weight gain, lead author Kandice Kapinos,
an assistant research scientist at the Institute for
Social Research at the University of Michigan,
explained in a news release from Health Behavior
News Service.

"This study confirms what we as public health
practitioners have believed for a while. Location is
not only important in real estate. It's also important
when it comes to health behaviors, and proximity of
food and exercise facilities influences our
behavior," Jeanie Alter, of the School of Health,
Physical Education and Recreation at Indiana University.

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