Children who exercise vigorously tend to have better grades. In contrast, overweight children tend to underachieve. With this in mind, Davis and her colleagues from Medical College of Georgia tested whether participating in an exercise program would help overweight children, not only physically but also mentally. Specifically, they hypothesized that the children executive functions would benefit from exercising. These functions are supported by the frontal lobes of the brain and include planning, goal setting, self-control, and inhibition.
171 children, aged 7 to 11, who were overweight and inactive participated in the study. They were randomly assigned to three groups: a low-dose group doing aerobic exercise 20 min/day, a high-dose group (40 min/day) and a no exercise control group. The exercise program lasted 13 weeks on average. [Read more…] about Exercise Improves the Cognition of Overweight Children