The task of persuading eight-year-old children to get a full night's sleep was reinforced by reports on NBC and CBS. Both publicized a study in the journal Pediatrics that found increased odds of unhealthy weight gain three years later for third-graders who skimped on the recommended nine-and-a-half hours of nightly shuteye. CBS' Sandra Hughes offered the statistics: 22% of those with too little sleep would grow up fat compared with 13% of those with more than enough. NBC's in-house physician Nancy Snyderman offered the explanation--hormones. "The hormones that are released while our children sleep are disrupted. That alters not only their metabolism, but also their appetites and the foods they crave. And it does not take long for the combination of poor sleep, altered metabolism, weight gain and couch potato lifestyle to all fall into place."
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