Physical Activity and Cognitive Function in Brazilian Children: Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Perspectives
- Presented on April 2014
Introduction: Cognitive function (CF) is responsible for mental and intellectual processes. The effects of physical activity (PA) on cognition are likely to be over brain structure and function. During childhood, nervous system structures are growing fast representing a crucial period for cognitive development.
Purpose: Analyze both cross-sectional and longitudinal associations between objectively measured PA and CF. Methods: A population-based sample of Brazilian children was analyzed in 2010 and 2012. Actigraph accelerometers were used to measure PA in both visits and cognitive function was measured by Stroop Test in 2012.
Methods: A population-based sample of Brazilian children was analyzed in 2010 and 2012. Actigraph accelerometers were used to measure PA in both visits and cognitive function was measured by Stroop Test in 2012.
Results: 136 children, mean age 7.2 years, and 155 children, mean age 9.9 years, provided valid data in 2010 and 2012 respectively. Cross sectional analyses revealed significant associations between light (P=0.034), moderate (P=0.034) and vigorous (P=0.006) physical activities and CF. Significant association was found for vigorous-intensity activities in comparison with light and moderate-intensity activities. However, after adjusting for controlling variables, these associations were no longer observed. Besides that, significant longitudinal association was found between CF and sedentary time (P=0.041). PA trajectory related to CF was significant from those who remain active during the follow up period (P= 0.009).
Conclusions: Active lifestyle maintenance during childhood, sedentary behavior and time spent in light, moderate and, most importantly, vigorous PA may have different effects on cognitive functioning in children.