Determinants of obesity and overweight among school children of Pune city, Maharashtra, India: a cross sectional study

Swati Ghonge, G.D. Bhambhani, P. S. Adhav, Nilesh Thakor


Background: Obesity  is  associated  with  an  increased  risk  of  morbidity  and  mortality  as  well  as  reduced   life  expectancy. The  last  two  decade  of  previous  century  have  witnessed  dramatic  increase  in  health  care  cost  due  to  obesity  and  related  issues  among  children  and  adolescents.The main objective of the study was to find out determinants of obesity and overweight among school children.

Methods: The present cross sectional study was undertaken during July 2009 to April 2011 in   randomly selected 4 schools of Pune city, India. Total 1281 children between the age group of 10 to 15 years were examined after taking written informed consent of their parents using pre-designed, pre-tested, semi-structured performa. Anthropometric measurements were taken and BMI were calculated. The prevalence of overweight and obesity were determined based on the IOTF (International Obesity Task Force) criteria. Various determinants of obesity and overweight were studied by interviewing children. Thus collected data was analyzed using Microsoft Excel and Open- Epi Software (Version 2.3).

Results: Out of 1281 children, 54.09% were males. Overall prevalence of obesity and overweight was 5.62% and 9.99% respectively. The  prevalence  of  obesity  and  overweight  was  significantly higher  amongst  less  active group  (9.3 %  and  13.95%, respectively) as  compared  to  more  active  group. Prevalence  of  obesity  and  overweight  was  significantly higher   in  the group  of children who spent >3 hours for study  and  who  spent >2 hours  daily   in  front  of  television  or  computers. The  prevalence  of  obesity  and  overweight  was significantly  higher  amongst  group of children who  took  daily  calories  above RDA (18.57%  and  15.19%  , respectively)  as  compared  to  the  other  group. The  prevalence  of  obesity  and  overweight   was  significantly higher  in  them (8.91%  and  13.36%)  as compared  to    those  who  took  junk  food  less  than  or  equal  to  2  times  per  week (1.71%  and  5.98%,respectively). The  prevalence  of  obesity  and  overweight  among  children  having  parents  with history  of  obesity   was  46.15%  and  17.94%, respectively which  was  significantly   higher  than those  without  parental  history  of  obesity (4.34%  and  9.74%).

Conclusions: The prevalence of obesity and overweight was significantly higher in children with sedentary lifestyle, high consumption of junk food and high calorie diet with positive family history of obesity.



Prevalence, Determinants of obesity, Overweight, School children, BMI

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