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Child Development

September 15, 2003 | Jane E. Allen, Times Staff Writer
Girls stick with sports and physical activity when their parents show them that fitness matters, either by setting an example or by encouraging their athletic pursuits. When neither parent directly promotes or supports exercise and athletics, just 30% of girls are physically active, according to a new report from researchers at Pennsylvania State University. When one parent gets involved, that figure rises to 56%.
September 15, 2003 | Valerie Reitman, Times Staff Writer
When it comes to adults' mental health, their early education and nutrition may have more impact than experts previously thought. Preschool programs that provide exercise, enriched instruction and hot meals with fish or meat may stave off mental illness and crime patterns that might otherwise occur in early adulthood, a study led by a University of Southern California psychology professor concludes.
September 8, 2003 | Jeannine Stein, Times Staff Writer
Strollers are a staple in every parent's collection of baby items, and moms and dads swear to their convenience. But they might want to consider parking those strollers. Some pediatricians believe that the devices may be contributing to less active lifestyles for toddlers and, as a result, an increase in obesity. "Parents will walk the dog and put the child in the stroller for convenience sake," says Dr.
June 2, 2003 | Dianne Partie Lange
A developing fetus begins to hear at about 30 weeks, and now researchers have learned that as the delivery date approaches, a fetus begins to distinguish its mother's voice from that of a stranger. Sixty Chinese women were divided into two groups, and fetal heart rates were measured before, during and after a pre-recorded two-minute poem was played through a speaker held above the mother's abdomen.
April 14, 2003 | Benedict Carey, Times Staff Writer
After 12 months of slinging diapers day and night, most parents begin to long for some deliverance, some break from the tyranny of the infant digestive system. Yet starting a child on toilet training early -- before age 2, as many parents do -- often backfires, pediatricians have reported. "In most cases there's no clear benefit to starting the training before 24 to 27 months," said Dr.
April 12, 2003
I took a good deal o' pains with his eddication, sir; let him run in the streets when he was wery young, and shift for hisself. It's the only way to make a boy sharp, sir. * The speaker above, the elder Mr. Weller in Charles Dickens' 1837 novel "The Pickwick Papers," was a true hard-knocks educator. These days, society tries to do better by the "wery young."
New research adds to a growing body of evidence that adult health is set to a significant degree by conditions in the womb and suggests the programming may start earlier in pregnancy than previously believed. A study published last week in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health found that fetuses with shorter thighbones at 24 weeks had higher blood pressure at the age of 6 than those with longer thighbones.
When Julie and William Heflin moved into a spacious new home last year, the four children were tucked into only two of the house's six bedrooms. Close quarters, the parents figured, would foster life lessons in sharing and cooperation. "My husband's one of 13 children," Julie Heflin said. "For him, it's a matter of principle for the kids to share, and they don't mind." On weekends, she said, their three boys and one girl, ages 11 to 4, sometimes pile into one bedroom.
July 29, 2002 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Zinc supplements given to infants in developing countries to improve growth and reduce susceptibility to infectious diseases could be harming the children's mental development, British researchers reported in Saturday's issue of the British journal The Lancet.
June 26, 2002 | BRIAN LOWRY
Even immersed in a much-needed vacation, my commitment to this column is such that my reading list included "The Other Parent: The Inside Story of the Media's Effect on Our Children," a new book by James P. Steyer.
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