The Effect of Active School Transportation on Childhood Obesity Prevention in Chinese Students Open Access

Ji, Xu (2013)

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There is an a trend of increasing trend of childhood obesity and decreasing active school transportation (AST) among Chinese student during the most recent 15 years, due to the rapid urbanization and Westernization. One theorized solution is to refocus on AST promotion in China; however, no clear evidence exists on whether AST is likely to be successful in reducing obesity among Chinese children and adolescents, and how this varies among different student sub-populations. This study examined the relationship between AST and childhood obesity in a recent population-based sample of Chinese students using the 1997-2009 China Health and Nutrition Surveys (n=3,932). Using random and fixed effects methods, I examined the likelihood of being overweight and obese in LPMs and the BMI z-score in OLS models, when controlling for AST time, school location, community urbanization indices, and household and individual characteristics. I then re-estimated every model and added an interaction composed of AST time and school location. There was no significant independent effect of AST time among all students, but a significant interaction effect of AST and school location on obesity and overweight. Among students whose schools were located within their communities, they were less likely to be overweight and obese, if they spend more AST time. In conclusion, AST is effective at reducing obesity for students whose schools are within their communities, but insufficient to address the overall childhood obesity problem in China. Future interventions should emphasize and promote AST, specifically targeting students whose schools are within community.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. Literature Review


Active School Transportation (AST)

Effect of AST on Childhood Obesity

Summary of Literature Limitations

3. Methods

Research Questions and Hypothesis

Data Source

Study Design and Subjects

Data Analysis

4. Results

Descriptive Analysis

Regression Analysis

5. Discussion

Commuting Modes and Childhood Obesity

Study Strength and Limitations

Policy Implications

Barriers for Active Commuting and Future Direction

6. Conclusion


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