Video game play, child diet, and physical activity behavior change

T Baranowski, J Baranowski, D Thompson, R Buday, RP Jago, M Juliano Griffith, N Islam, N Nguyen, KB Watson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

    168 Citations (Scopus)


    Background Video games designed to promote behavior change are a promising venue to enable children to learn healthier behaviors. Purpose Evaluate outcome from playing “Escape from Diab” (Diab) and “Nanoswarm: Invasion from Inner Space” (Nano) video games on children's diet, physical activity, and adiposity. Design Two-group RCT; assessments occurred at baseline, immediately after Diab, immediately after Nano, and 2 months later. Data were collected in 2008–2009, and analyses were conducted in 2009–2010. Setting/participants 133 children aged 10–12 years, initially between 50th percentile and 95th percentile BMI. Intervention Treatment group played Diab and Nano in sequence. Control Group played diet and physical activity knowledge-based games on popular websites. Main outcome measures Servings of fruit, vegetable, and water; minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity. At each point of assessment: 3 nonconsecutive days of 24-hour dietary recalls; 5 consecutive days of physical activity using accelerometers; and assessment of height, weight, waist circumference, and triceps skinfold. Results A repeated measures ANCOVA was conducted (analyzed in 2009–2010). Children playing these video games increased fruit and vegetable consumption by about 0.67 servings per day (p
    Translated title of the contributionVideo game play, child diet, and physical activity behavior change
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)33 - 38
    Number of pages6
    JournalAmerican Journal of Preventive Medicine
    Volume40 (1)
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2011

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher: Elsevier


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