(Cover) – EN Fitness & Wellbeing – New research has found that children who don’t get the recommended amount of sleep are more likely to face obesity problems.We all know that getting enough shut eye, whether you’re an adult or a kid, is important for our mental alertness, but a link has now also been found between sleep and weight gain.Led by scientists from Warwick University, the team analysed 42 previous studies involving 75,499 people up to the age of 18.Children were labelled a short sleeper if they slept less than the recommended number of hours, or a regular sleeper.The team worked within the guidelines set by the National Sleep Foundation, which recommends babies aged between four and 11 months get at least 12 hours sleep a night, toddlers get between 11 and 14 hours and children in preschool get 10 to 13 hours, while children aged six to 13 should get at least nine hours and older teenagers between eight and 10.The team discovered that the risk of obesity was 40 per cent higher in little kids who didn’t get enough sleep, 57 per cent higher in preschool children and 123 per cent for those aged six to 13. For teenagers, the risk of obesity for those not getting enough shut eye went up by 30 per cent. “Being overweight can lead to heart disease and type 2 diabetes, which is also on the increase in children,” study co-author Dr Michelle Miller said.“The findings of the study indicate that sleep may be an important potentially modifiable risk factor (or marker) of future obesity.”Results have been published in the journal Sleep.© Cover Media