Education, school type and screen time were associated with overweight and obesity in 2,930 adolescents.

Dieter Furthner, Margit Ehrenmüller, Gerhard Halmerbauer, Andrea Biebl, Klaus Schmitt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


AIM: This cross-sectional study analysed the influence of socioeconomic factors on screen time, overweight and obesity. METHODS: We asked adolescents aged 10, 14 and 17 from 10 school types in urban and rural regions in Upper Austria to complete questionnaires from December 2012 to February 2013. Their parents were also asked to complete questionnaires. RESULTS: The questionnaires were completed by 2,930 adolescents and 2,209 parents. Total weekend screen time was significantly associated with a higher body mass index (BMI) in 10-year-old boys (p<0.005) and 10-year-old girls (p=0.002) and there were significant associations between higher BMI and television time and longer weekend video game use in subjects aged 10 and 14. Higher education levels were associated with shorter daily video game use and longer computer use. Males (p<0.0001) and adolescents from immigrant families (p<0.0001) reported longer screen times at all ages. Lower parental education and higher parental BMI correlated significantly with longer screen time and BMI in the youngest age group. CONCLUSIONS: The greatest weight problems were in younger adolescents, despite shorter screen times, and boys and adolescents from immigrant families reported the longest screen times. Prevention strategies need to start early. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages5
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017


  • Adolescents
  • body mass index
  • obesity
  • parental education
  • screen time


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