The Monitor Daily (U.S.) – Water jets provide weight control alternative shortcut as per the findings of a New York City-based study featuring in the JAMA Pediatrics. A New York City project developed over the course of several years oversaw the implementation of water jets or water dispensers in 40 percent of the schools in the area.
The recently published study looked at how freely available water in the cafeteria influenced elementary and middle school students’ beverage choice. Moreover, the research pinpointed the benefic effects of water jets on driving weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight. As the conclusion of the research pointed out, water jets provide weight control alternative shortcut for students who benefit from the free dispensers being installed in their schools.
The project was developed by the Department of Education and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. 40 percent of the schools in the region received water jets, machines offering free water servings. The research focused on over 1,200 students attending these schools. An analysis of students’ health data collected by the schools indicated that more water consumption was consistent with a decrease in the standardized body mass index (sBMI).
More and more American children and teenagers are either obese or overweight. The obesity epidemic – as it has been often dubbed – is a public health issue. Several programs have been developed to counter the growing epidemic. However, water consumption is often overlooked. The new research using the New York City schools as a study case suggests that something as simple as offering free water could play a key role in fighting child and teenage obesity.
Those schools which had water jets installed in the cafeterias saw a shift in the students’ beverage choice. More students opted for water rather than sugary drinks, milk or chocolate milk conventionally on the menu. This shift alone suggests that making water jets readily available could help weight management strategies.
The research spanned a five-year timeframe. Annually, schools collect health data on each student. The health records include the BMI of the students, their weight and height. The research team compared the data prior to the introduction of water jets and in the following period.
Overall, students attending the New York City schools where water jets were introduced were found to have lost weight or maintained a healthy weight throughout. Comparatively, students who didn’t have access to water dispensers in the cafeterias didn’t show any progress. For the group o students who did have access to water jets, the drop in sBMI was calculated at .025 for boys and .022 for girls. In addition, this simple weight management strategy decreased the chances of gaining weight by .6 for girls and .9 for boys.
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