Skip to main content
ARS Home » Southeast Area » Little Rock, Arkansas » Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #137082

Title: BLINKING, REACTION TIME AND MORNING NUTRITION IN PREADOLESCENTS

Author
item Dykman, Roscoe
item PIVIK, R

Submitted to: Society of Psychophysiological Research
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/18/2002
Publication Date: 10/4/2002
Citation: DYKMAN, R., PIVIK, R.T. BLINKING, REACTION TIME AND MORNING NUTRITION IN PREADOLESCENTS. Society of Psychophysiological Research. 2002. v. 39. Abstract p. S33.

Interpretive Summary: Although eyeblinks and nutritional status have been related independently to information processing, the interactions among these variables have not been studied. This study examined these covariations in healthy children (8-11 yrs. Old; IQ >80) performing an attentional task after overnight fasting and again after eating a USDA approved school breakfast (n=19, 7 males) or while continuing to fast (n=21, 8 males). Measure of sleep (overnight actigraphy) and blood glucose (finger sticks before testing sessions) were also obtained. Blinks were determined (vertical eye-movement recordings) while subjects performed a Continuous Performance Task (300 letters: each letter presented for .2 sec.; 1 every 2.2 sec.) pressing a button to target letters (X after A; 17% random occurrence). Recordings were analyzed off-line for determination of blink onset (fast component >25µV above baseline) with respect to reaction times (RTs) to target stimuli. Data were analyzed using repeated measures analysis of variance with post-hoc t-tests. Groups were similar in sleep time and efficiency, and blood glucose increased (p<.001) in fed subjects. For both groups: blinks occurred more often before than after RT (p<.001); RTs were longer on blink-free trials relative to those with blinks ( p<.001), and were shortest when blinks followed RT (Pre>Post, p<.001) . There were no significant group-by-treatment effects. The results indicate associations between blinks and information processing generally consistent with those reported in adults. These relationships were not significantly affected by the variations in morning nutrition employed in this study.

Technical Abstract: Although eyeblinks and nutritional status have been related to information processing, the interactions among these variables have not been studied. This study examined these covariations in healthy children (8-11 yrs. Old; IQ >80) performing an attentional task after overnight fasting and again after eating a USDA approved school breakfast (n=19, 7 males) or while continuing to fast (n=21, 8 males). Measure of sleep (overnight actigraphy) and blood glucose (finger sticks before testing sessions) were also obtained. Blinks were determined (vertical EOG) while subjects performed a Continuous Performance Task (300 letters: .2 sec. duration; 1/ 2.2 sec.) pressing a button to target letters (X after A; 17% random occurrence). Recordings were digitized for off-line determination of blink onset (fast component ¿25¿V above baseline) with respect to reaction times (RTs) to target stimuli. Data were analyzed using repeated measures ANOVA with post-hoc t-tests. Groups were similar in sleep time and efficiency, and blood glucose increased (p<.001) in fed subjects. For both groups: blinks occurred more often before than after RT (p<.001); RTs were longer on blink-free trials relative to those with blinks ( p<.001), and were shortest when blinks followed RT (Pre>Post, p<.001) . There was no significant group-by-treatment effects. The results indicate robust associations between blinks and stimulus response processes generally consistent with those reported in adults. These relationships were not significantly affected by the variations in morning nutrition employed in this study.