New Study Proves Beacon Street Girls Books Fight Childhood Obesity | Business Wire

LEXINGTON, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A new study from Duke Children’s Hospital

indicates the Beacon

Street Girls’ popular book series helps

tween girls improve their eating and exercise habits. Significantly

improve their Body Mass Index (BMI) percentiles. The study was presented

over the weekend at the Obesity Society annual scientific meeting.

The most recent National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

(NHANES) data (2003–2004) shows that

approximately 18 percent of children aged 6 to 19 years old are

overweight. The Beacon Street Girls brand was specifically designed to

entertain while providing healthy role models and positive messages.

“We're extremely proud to be associated with

this important study, as well as delighted that our dedication to

quality media had a concrete impact on the health of a group of young

girls,” said Addie Swartz, CEO, B*tween

Productions, Inc., the home of the Beacon Street Girls. “This

study confirms what we'd previously heard from parents –

that girls take life lessons from the Beacon Street Girls and actually

change their behaviors.”

Study Overview and Findings

The study, Can Children’s Literature

Promote Healthy Lifestyles?, tested whether an age-appropriate novel

can improve BMI as well as exercise and nutrition-related knowledge and

behaviors in tween girls enrolled in a childhood obesity treatment

program. A group of overweight and obese girls enrolled in The Duke

Healthy Lifestyles Program read Lake Rescue, the sixth book in

the Beacon Street Girls 18-book series. Charlotte in Paris,

one of the Beacon Street Girls special adventure books. A control group

wasn't given a book.

Lake Rescue tells the story of an overweight girl whose

adventures help her learn the importance of appropriate nutrition and

exercise. The book was developed in consultation with five healthy

lifestyle experts. Charlotte in Paris features the Beacon Street

characters and signature positive messages designed to promote

self-esteem but doesn't directly address weight issues.

According to the study, girls who read either Beacon Street Girls book

as part of the program decreased their BMIs more significantly than

other girls in the study. After 6 months, researchers found the girls

who read Lake Rescue experienced a significant decrease in their

Body Mass Index (BMI), when compared to girls who hadn’t

read the book. (Because kids are still growing, BMI is the most accurate

measure of a healthy weight.) Surprisingly, the Charlotte in Paris

readers also had positive results, losing more than non-readers but not

as much as Lake Rescue readers. The only other proven and

effective strategies for adolescent weight loss today involve

medication, surgery or other invasive techniques.

Online World Provides Another Avenue to Reach Girls with Positive

Messages

Both the books and the Beacon

Street Girls website help girls grapple with issues they face as

adolescents. The online world of the Beacon Street Girls provides a

friendly format for receiving the most up-to-date advice and guidance

from leading experts in adolescence. These experts also work with

B*tween to cover a variety of tween-specific issues, including body

image, online safety, diet and healthy lifestyles. Book “extras”

from Lake Rescue are available online, including “Healthy

You” recipes, lifestyle and exercise tips.

The Beacon Street Girls’ safe social network

is modelled on a virtual junior high, complete with lockers to decorate

and personalise. A myriad of online activities designed to satisfy

tweens’ ever-growing need to create and

communicate with each other. Tied to the literary world of the

award-winning Beacon Street Girls, now published by Simon &. Schuster,

the free online club provides a fun and excitement for preteen girls

around the globe. And like the books, its positive and healthy messages

help girls feel empowered to be their best selves.

The Beacon Street Girls world and Club BSG can be found online at http://www.beaconstreetgirls.com

Beacon Street Girls books are available wherever books are sold.

For Beacon Street Girls
Bobbie Carlton, 781-863-8228 ext 201
[email protected]