Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Children's Health

Font Size

More Sleep, Less Childhood Obesity

Skimping on Sleep May Make Children More Likely to Become Overweight or Obese

What About Genes?

That doesn't mean that other factors -- including genes, diet, and exercise -- aren't important. Just yesterday, another team of researchers noted heredity's influence on childhood obesity.

"I think people should be aware of all the important potential risk factors," Wang says.

He points out that genes may only have their full effect when the conditions are right -- and in the case of obesity genes, that might mean being in a setting ripe with opportunities to overeat.

"It's a coin; which side do you want to pay more attention to?" Wang asks, putting genes on one side of the coin and environmental factors on the flip side.

"I think from a public health perspective, people should pay more attention to environmental and behavioral factors," Wang says. He notes that gene tests and gene therapy aren't yet available for obesity. And though you can't change your genes, behavior can bend.

1|2

Today on WebMD

child with red rash on cheeks
What’s that rash?
plate of fruit and veggies
How healthy is your child’s diet?
 
smiling baby
Treating diarrhea, fever and more.
Middle school band practice
Understanding your child’s changing body.
 

worried kid
fitArticle
boy on father's shoulder
Article
 
Child with red rash on cheeks
Slideshow
girl thinking
Article
 

babyapp
New
Child with adhd
Slideshow
 
rl with friends
fitSlideshow
Syringes and graph illustration
Tool
 
6-Week Challenges
Want to know more?
Chill Out and Charge Up Challenge – How to help your tribe de-stress and energize.
Spark Change Challenge - Ready for a healthy change? Get some major motivation.
I have read and agreed to WebMD's Privacy Policy.
Enter cell phone number
- -
Entering your cell phone number and pressing submit indicates you agree to receive text messages from WebMD related to this challenge. WebMD is utilizing a 3rd party vendor, CellTrust, to provide the messages. You can opt out at any time.
Standard text rates apply