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The 5th wave of the IDEFICS/I.Family cohort study was implemented in 2020/2021 as a web-based survey.
From the previous survey waves, we had already learned a lot about lifestyle habits such as physical activity and eating behaviours and their role in the development of children´s and adolescent’s health. The cohort was entering exciting times, as most of the children have become adolescents or adults since their last participation. Adolescence and young adulthood represent times of transition. For many young people this includes moving out of the family home, going into further education or beginning full-time work. It is also a time when young people establish lifestyle habits that may affect their future health. The aim of this follow-up study was to find out whether lifestyle behaviours have changed over the last years, and if this possibly affected young people’s well-being, health and risk of disease.
More than 5,000 adolescents and young adults from nine European countries completed a web-based questionnaire and provided comprehensive information on their lifestyle behaviours, well-being and health status. This extended the observation period of the IDEFICS/I.Family cohort to about 14 years and allows to investigate the role of environmental factors, behaviours and psychosocial factors in relation to various health outcomes from infancy to early adulthood. The wealth of data of this pan-European cohort covers all known risk factors for obesity as well as numerous metabolic markers and remains the main resource for investigations into young people’s health over the early life-course.
The collected information is currently being evaluated for preparing scientific publications.