PREVALENCE AND PREDICTING RISK FACTORS OF OVERWEIGHT AND OBESITY AMONG PRIMARY SCHOOL PUPILS IN RAMADI, IRAQ
Childhood obesity is increasing at a dramatic rate that it can be considered a pandemic. The aim of this study is to address the prevalence of obesity among primary pupils in Ramadi City and to determine different risk factors associated with obesity among these children. A cross-sectional study was carried out and random selections of three primary schools were taken at the center of Ramadi City. A total of 512 pupils were included in this study (232 male and 280 female) to include all eligible children age 6 to 12 years. The study period was during the study year 2018-2019. Anthropometric measurements of height and body weight were carried out using standardized methods.The prevalence of overweight was 15.4% (85-97th percentile) and obese (=≥ 97th percentile) was 13.3%. The Mean BMI percentile of pupils was 17.8±3.9, range (11.3-37.5). Risk factors highly associated with overweight and obesity (P>0.05) were gender, increased age, mother education, taking breakfast and fruits, sitting in front of the TV. While daily vegetable intake and type of feeding at first 6 months after delivery were not found to be significantly associated with overweight and obesity in our study.The prevalence of overweight and obesity primary school children in this study are at an alarming level and the disease trends are growing in this country. Preventive pupils' health action is required for this age group.
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