Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviors, and Nutritional Risk Profiles and Relations to Body Mass Index, Obesity, and Overweight in Eighth Grade


The objective of this article was to determine (1) the existence of individually varying patterns of physical activity, sedentary behavior, and nutrition intake risk; and (2) how these risk-patterns relate to youth's demographics, Body mass index (BMI) and psychosocial functioning. Participants (N = 9,304) from the 2007 8th Grade Early Childhood Longitudinal Study Cohort completed the revised Self-Description Questionnaire II. Age, sex, height, and weight were used to calculate body mass index (BMI) z scores and percentiles. Three risk profiles emerged via Latent Profile Analyses: “Active + Healthy Diet” (AHD; 16.3% Obese); “Sedentary + Unbalanced Diet” (SUD; 21.3% Obese); and “Screen-Time + Recreational Food” (STRF; 25.0% Obese). Significant differences in BMIs, psychosocial factors, and demographic characteristics were found across the profiles. Differential patterns of physical activity, sedentary behavior, and nutritional choices were found to predict BMI and psychosocial functioning. These findings may be helpful to refine and develop modular-based prevention and weight control intervention programs.

Publication Title

Behavioral Medicine