Adverse Childhood Experiences and Weight Status among Adolescents

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Abstract

Objective: To investigate the relationship between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and weight status among adolescents. Study design: Data were drawn from the Minnesota Student Survey, a large (n = 105 759), statewide, anonymous survey of public school students in eighth, ninth, and eleventh grades. Self-reported height and weight were used to calculate body mass index. Multinomial logistic regression was used to examine associations between self-reported ACEs and weight status, controlling for key sociodemographic characteristics. Results: ACEs were positively associated with weight status; adolescents with more ACEs were more likely to have overweight, obesity, and severe obesity than adolescents with no ACEs. Adolescents who reported an ACE were 1.2, 1.4, and 1.5 times as likely to have overweight, obesity, and severe obesity, respectively, compared with their peers with no ACEs. There was no relationship between ACEs and underweight. Conclusions: The results of this large sample of adolescents with anonymous data support the hypothesis that ACEs and obesity are strongly associated. The directionality of this relationship needs to be understood. Moreover, these findings suggest that child health professionals may need to screen for ACEs as an important aspect of clinical weight management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-76.e1
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
Volume204
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
L.D. was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under National Research Service Award in Primary Medical Care (T32HP22239 [PI: Borowsky]), Bureau of Health Workforce. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS, or the US Government. A.B. was supported by #2-T73MC12835?03-00 from the Maternal & Child Health Bureau (MCHB) of the US Department of Health and Human Services awarded to the University of Minnesota. R.S. was supported by a career development award from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences of the National Institutes of Health (UL1TR000114). The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Funding Information:
L.D. was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under National Research Service Award in Primary Medical Care ( T32HP22239 [PI: Borowsky]), Bureau of Health Workforce. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS, or the US Government. A.B. was supported by #2-T73MC12835–03-00 from the Maternal & Child Health Bureau (MCHB) of the US Department of Health and Human Services awarded to the University of Minnesota. R.S. was supported by a career development award from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences of the National Institutes of Health ( UL1TR000114 ). The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Inc.

Copyright:
Copyright 2019 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • adverse childhood experiences
  • obesity
  • overweight
  • severe obesity

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