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1.  Association between general and central adiposity in childhood, and change in these, with cardiovascular risk factors in adolescence: prospective cohort study 
Objectives To examine the prospective associations between body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, and fat mass in childhood and cardiovascular risk factors at age 15-16.
Design Prospective cohort study.
Setting Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children.
Participants 5235 children aged 9-12 at start of study.
Main exposures BMI, waist circumference, and fat mass determined by dual energy x ray absorptiometry, assessed at age 9-12 and at age 15-16.
Main outcome measures Systolic and diastolic blood pressure and concentrations of fasting glucose, insulin, triglycerides, low density lipoprotein cholesterol, and high density lipoprotein cholesterol assessed at age 15-16.
Results In girls a 1 SD greater BMI at age 9-12 was associated with cardiovascular risk factors at age 15-16 in fully adjusted models: odds ratio 1.23 (95% confidence interval 1.10 to 1.38) for high systolic blood pressure (≥130 mm Hg); 1.19 (1.03 to 1.38) for high concentration of low density lipoprotein cholesterol (≥2.79 mmol/l); 1.43 (1.06 to 1.92) for high concentration of triglycerides (≥1.7 mmol/l); 1.25 (1.08 to 1.46) for low concentration of high density lipoprotein cholesterol (<1.03 mmol/l); and 1.45 (1.22 to 1.73) for high concentration of insulin (≥16.95 IU/l). Equivalent results in boys were 1.24 (1.13 to 1.37) for systolic blood pressure; 1.30 (1.07 to 1.59) for low density lipoprotein cholesterol; 1.96 (1.51 to 2.55) for triglycerides; 1.39 (1.22 to 1.57) for high density lipoprotein cholesterol, and 1.84 (1.56 to 2.17) for insulin. BMI was associated with high fasting glucose (≥5.6 mmol/l) only in boys (1.18, 1.03 to 1.36). With these binary outcomes there was statistical evidence that associations differed between girls and boys for fasting glucose (P=0.03) and insulin (P<0.001). When risk factors were examined as continuous outcomes there was evidence for stronger associations of BMI with more adverse levels in boys than girls for fasting insulin, glucose, and triglyceride concentrations (all interaction P≤0.03). BMI, waist circumference, and fat mass were all strongly correlated with each other (r=0.89-0.94), and associations of the three with cardiovascular outcomes were of similar magnitude with statistical evidence of consistency in associations (all P>0.2 for heterogeneity). When waist circumference or fat mass or both were added to models including BMI they did not increase the variation in cardiovascular risk factors already explained by BMI and confounders alone. Girls who were overweight/obese at age 9-12 but were normal weight by 15-16 had similar odds of adverse levels of risk factors to those who were normal weight at both ages. In boys odds of high systolic blood pressure, high concentrations of triglycerides and insulin, and low concentrations of high density lipoprotein cholesterol remained higher in this group compared with those who were normal weight at both ages but were lower than in those who remained overweight/obese at both ages.
Conclusions Measurements of waist circumference or directly assessed fat mass in childhood do not seem to be associated with cardiovascular risk factors in adolescence any more strongly than BMI. Girls who favourably alter their overweight status between childhood and adolescence have cardiovascular risk profiles broadly similar to those who were normal weight at both time points, but boys who change from overweight to normal show risk factor profiles intermediate between those seen in boys who are normal weight at both ages or overweight at both ages.
doi:10.1136/bmj.c6224
PMCID: PMC2992109  PMID: 21109577
2.  Arterial stiffness in obese children: Role of adiposity and physical activity 
Objective:
To explore association of adiposity and physical activity with arterial stiffness and to propose optimal waist circumference cutoffs, corresponding to 90th percentile of NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) for Indian children and adolescents.
Materials and Methods:
Data on weight, height, waist circumference, physical activity and right Carotid artery Intima-Media-Thickness (CIMT), pulse wave velocity (PWV), elasticity modulus (Ep), stiffness index(β), arterial compliance (AC) were assessed in 250 children (72 normal-weight and 178 overweight/obese) aged 6-17 years from Pune city, India. Body composition was measured using Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry.
Results:
Total, 37.1% normal-weight and 98.2% overweight/obese children had high adiposity (>95th body fat percentile). Positive association of PWV and Ep (r = 0.5) also β(r = 0.25) with BMI (Body Mass Index), waist circumference and body fat (P < 0.05) was observed. Physical activity was inversely associated with PWV (r =-0.2), β(r =-0.13), Ep (r =-0.12) and positively with AC (r = 0.12) (P < 0.05). PWV significantly increased with increasing body fat for each tertile of physical activity (P < 0.05). Regression analysis revealed waist circumference, BMI, body fat and physical activity as independent associates for PWV after adjusting for age (P < 0.05). The cutoff of waist circumference yielding sensitivity and specificity for predicting the risk of high PWV was (−0.43, −0.44) for boys and girls with sensitivity in boys (girls) of 78% (87%) and specificity in boys (girls) 51% (70%). The observed cutoffs are less than the NHANES-III cutoff values of waist circumference for 90th percentiles according to age and sex.
Conclusion:
High adiposity and low physical activity are adversely related to arterial stiffness in Indian children.
doi:10.4103/2230-8210.126565
PMCID: PMC3968737  PMID: 24701433
Arterial stiffness; body fat; physical activity
3.  Association of lipid profile and waist circumference as cardiovascular risk factors for overweight and obesity among school children in Qatar 
Background
Childhood obesity is a national as well as worldwide problem. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association of overweight and obesity among Qatari children with lipid profile and waist circumference as adverse cardiovascular risk factors in children aged 6–11 years. International Obesity Task Force reference values were used to screen for overweight and obesity.
Methods
A cross-sectional study in a randomly selected sample was conducted in 315 Qatari primary school students aged 6–11 years. Anthropometric measurements, including body weight, height, waist circumference, and body mass index were calculated for 151 girls and 164 boys. Weight categories were based on International Obesity Task Force reference values. Fasting blood glucose, total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), and triglycerides were measured, and atherogenic index was calculated.
Results
In total, 31.71% of boys and 32.78% of girls were overweight or obese. Overweight and obese children screened against International Obesity Task Force reference values had a significantly increased risk of high waist circumference (P < 0.0001), hypertriglyceridemia (P = 0.002), low HDL-C (P = 0.017), and atherogenic index (P = 0.021) compared with children who were not overweight or obese. The partial correlation coefficient for the cardiovascular risk marker of waist circumference indicated a positive significant association with total cholesterol (r = 0.465, P = 0.003), triglycerides (r = 0.563, P < 0.001), and LDL-C (r = 0.267, P = 0.003), and a significant negative association with HDL-C (r = −0.361, P = 0.004). Overweight and obesity significantly increase the odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence interval (CIs) of cardiovascular risk factors as follows: hypertriglyceridemia (OR 6.34, CI 2.49–13.44, P < 0.0001); LDL-C (OR 3.18, CI 1.04–9.75, P = 0.043); hypercholesterolemia (OR 1.88, CI 1.10–3.19, P = 0.020); and increased waist circumference (OR 1.40, CI 1.29–1.55, P = 0.022). Overweight and obesity significantly increased the risk of atherosclerosis (assessed by atherogenic index) by about two-fold (OR 1.83, 95% CI 1.06–3.15, P = 0.025).
Conclusion
Overweight and obese children screened by International Obesity Task Force reference values are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood.
doi:10.2147/DMSO.S39189
PMCID: PMC3532017  PMID: 23277742
cardiovascular risks; children; lipid profile; obesity; and waist circumference
4.  Long-Term Risk of Incident Type 2 Diabetes and Measures of Overall and Regional Obesity: The EPIC-InterAct Case-Cohort Study 
PLoS Medicine  2012;9(6):e1001230.
A collaborative re-analysis of data from the InterAct case-control study conducted by Claudia Langenberg and colleagues has established that waist circumference is associated with risk of type 2 diabetes, independently of body mass index.
Background
Waist circumference (WC) is a simple and reliable measure of fat distribution that may add to the prediction of type 2 diabetes (T2D), but previous studies have been too small to reliably quantify the relative and absolute risk of future diabetes by WC at different levels of body mass index (BMI).
Methods and Findings
The prospective InterAct case-cohort study was conducted in 26 centres in eight European countries and consists of 12,403 incident T2D cases and a stratified subcohort of 16,154 individuals from a total cohort of 340,234 participants with 3.99 million person-years of follow-up. We used Prentice-weighted Cox regression and random effects meta-analysis methods to estimate hazard ratios for T2D. Kaplan-Meier estimates of the cumulative incidence of T2D were calculated. BMI and WC were each independently associated with T2D, with WC being a stronger risk factor in women than in men. Risk increased across groups defined by BMI and WC; compared to low normal weight individuals (BMI 18.5–22.4 kg/m2) with a low WC (<94/80 cm in men/women), the hazard ratio of T2D was 22.0 (95% confidence interval 14.3; 33.8) in men and 31.8 (25.2; 40.2) in women with grade 2 obesity (BMI≥35 kg/m2) and a high WC (>102/88 cm). Among the large group of overweight individuals, WC measurement was highly informative and facilitated the identification of a subgroup of overweight people with high WC whose 10-y T2D cumulative incidence (men, 70 per 1,000 person-years; women, 44 per 1,000 person-years) was comparable to that of the obese group (50–103 per 1,000 person-years in men and 28–74 per 1,000 person-years in women).
Conclusions
WC is independently and strongly associated with T2D, particularly in women, and should be more widely measured for risk stratification. If targeted measurement is necessary for reasons of resource scarcity, measuring WC in overweight individuals may be an effective strategy, since it identifies a high-risk subgroup of individuals who could benefit from individualised preventive action.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Worldwide, more than 350 million people have diabetes, and this number is increasing rapidly. Diabetes is characterized by dangerous levels of glucose (sugar) in the blood. Blood sugar levels are usually controlled by insulin, a hormone that the pancreas releases after meals (digestion of food produces glucose). In people with type 2 diabetes (the commonest form of diabetes), blood sugar control fails because the fat and muscle cells that normally respond to insulin by removing sugar from the blood become insulin resistant. Type 2 diabetes can be controlled with diet and exercise, and with drugs that help the pancreas make more insulin or that make cells more sensitive to insulin. The long-term complications of diabetes, which include an increased risk of heart disease and stroke, reduce the life expectancy of people with diabetes by about 10 years compared to people without diabetes.
Why Was This Study Done?
A high body mass index (BMI, a measure of body fat calculated by dividing a person's weight in kilograms by their height in meters squared) is a strong predictor of type 2 diabetes. Although the risk of diabetes is greatest in obese people (who have a BMI of greater than 30 kg/m2), many of the people who develop diabetes are overweight—they have a BMI of 25–30 kg/m2. Healthy eating and exercise reduce the incidence of diabetes in high-risk individuals, but it is difficult and expensive to provide all overweight and obese people with individual lifestyle advice. Ideally, a way is needed to distinguish between people with high and low risk of developing diabetes at different levels of BMI. Waist circumference is a measure of fat distribution that has the potential to quantify diabetes risk among people with different BMIs because it estimates the amount of fat around the abdominal organs, which also predicts diabetes development. In this case-cohort study, the researchers use data from the InterAct study (which is investigating how genetics and lifestyle interact to affect diabetes risk) to estimate the long-term risk of type 2 diabetes associated with BMI and waist circumference. A case-cohort study measures exposure to potential risk factors in a group (cohort) of people and compares the occurrence of these risk factors in people who later develop the disease and in a randomly chosen subcohort.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers estimated the association of BMI and waist circumference with type 2 diabetes from baseline measurements of the weight, height, and waist circumference of 12,403 people who subsequently developed type 2 diabetes and a subcohort of 16,154 participants enrolled in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). Both risk factors were independently associated with type 2 diabetes risk, but waist circumference was a stronger risk factor in women than in men. Obese men (BMI greater than 35 kg/m2) with a high waist circumference (greater than 102 cm) were 22 times more likely to develop diabetes than men with a low normal weight (BMI 18.5–22.4 kg/m2) and a low waist circumference (less than 94 cm); obese women with a waist circumference of more than 88 cm were 31.8 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than women with a low normal weight and waist circumference (less than 80 cm). Importantly, among overweight people, waist circumference measurements identified a subgroup of overweight people (those with a high waist circumference) whose 10-year cumulative incidence of type 2 diabetes was similar to that of obese people.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings indicate that, among people of European descent, waist circumference is independently and strongly associated with type 2 diabetes, particularly among women. Additional studies are needed to confirm this association in other ethnic groups. Targeted measurement of waist circumference in overweight individuals (who now account for a third of the US and UK adult population) could be an effective strategy for the prevention of diabetes because it would allow the identification of a high-risk subgroup of people who might benefit from individualized lifestyle advice.
Additional Information
Please access these web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001230.
The US National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse provides information about diabetes for patients, health care professionals, and the general public, including detailed information on diabetes prevention (in English and Spanish)
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides information on all aspects of overweight and obesity (including some information in Spanish)
The UK National Health Service Choices website provides information for patients and carers about type 2 diabetes, about the prevention of type 2 diabetes, and about obesity; it also includes peoples stories about diabetes and about obesity
The charity Diabetes UK also provides detailed information for patients and carers, including information on healthy lifestyles for people with diabetes, and has a further selection of stories from people with diabetes; the charity Healthtalkonline has interviews with people about their experiences of diabetes
More information on the InterAct study is available
MedlinePlus provides links to further resources and advice about diabetes and diabetes prevention and about obesity (in English and Spanish)
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001230
PMCID: PMC3367997  PMID: 22679397
5.  Metabolic Syndrome in School Children in Mardin, South-Eastern of Turkey 
The Eurasian Journal of Medicine  2014;46(3):156-163.
Objective:
To determine the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome (MES) in a school children population.
Materials and Methods:
Three thousand four hundred and sixty children aged between 7 and 15 in three elementary schools in the city of Mardin, located in the south-eastern region of Turkey, were included in this study in April and May 2011. Age, gender, height, weight, waist circumference (WC), hip circumference, waist/hip ratio, systolic and diastolic blood pressure were measured and a variety of blood tests were done. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) criteria were used for the diagnosis of MES.
Results:
It was found that 9.42% of those tested were overweight, and 8.0% were obese. The study found that more girls (9.1%) were obese than girls (6.9%). The prevalence of obesity was significantly higher among girls than boys (p<0.001). A positive correlation was found between body mass index (BMI) and the other parameters, namely waist and hip circumference, waist/hip ratio, systolic and diastolic blood pressure (BP), triglyceride (TG) (p=0.0001). It was found that total cholesterol (T-Chol), TG, BMI, systolic and diastolic BP were significantly different among obese MES’s group and non-obese children (p<0.05). The waist/hip ratio reference value in girls was significantly higher than boys (p>0.05). The prevalence of MES was 6.3%. The number of components of MES was higher in girls and obese children. The rate of MES was 30.3% in obese children.
Conclusion:
The frequency of obesity, hypertension and MES in childhood period have been steadily increasing. Children who are classified having central obesity and high body mass index should be more carefully evaluated to its potential to progress to MES. And the quality of the life should be improved by reducing the risks resulted from life style changes, necessary treatments and follow ups.
doi:10.5152/eajm.2014.39
PMCID: PMC4299848  PMID: 25610318
Childhood obesity; metabolic syndrome; hypertension
6.  Prenatal and Postnatal Bisphenol A Exposure and Body Mass Index in Childhood in the CHAMACOS Cohort 
Environmental Health Perspectives  2013;121(4):514-520.
Background: Bisphenol A (BPA), a widely used endocrine-disrupting chemical, has been associated with increased body weight and fat deposition in rodents.
Objectives: We examined whether prenatal and postnatal urinary BPA concentrations were associated with body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, percent body fat, and obesity in 9-year-old children (n = 311) in the CHAMACOS longitudinal cohort study.
Methods: BPA was measured in spot urine samples collected from mothers twice during pregnancy and from children at 5 and 9 years of age.
Results: Prenatal urinary BPA concentrations were associated with decreased BMI at 9 years of age in girls but not boys. Among girls, being in the highest tertile of prenatal BPA concentrations was associated with decreased BMI z-score (β = –0.47, 95% CI: –0.87, –0.07) and percent body fat (β = –4.36, 95% CI: –8.37, –0.34) and decreased odds of overweight/obesity [odds ratio (OR) = 0.37, 95% CI: 0.16, 0.91] compared with girls in the lowest tertile. These findings were strongest in prepubertal girls. Urinary BPA concentrations at 5 years of age were not associated with any anthropometric parameters at 5 or 9 years, but BPA concentrations at 9 years were positively associated with BMI, waist circumference, fat mass, and overweight/obesity at 9 years in boys and girls.
Conclusions: Consistent with other cross-sectional studies, higher urinary BPA concentrations at 9 years of age were associated with increased adiposity at 9 years. However, increasing BPA concentrations in mothers during pregnancy were associated with decreased BMI, body fat, and overweight/obesity among their daughters at 9 years of age.
doi:10.1289/ehp.1205548
PMCID: PMC3620748  PMID: 23416456
bisphenol A; BMI; CHAMACOS; children; obesity
7.  Correlation between Fitness and Fatness in 6-14-year Old Serbian School Children 
Lack of physical activity and/or physical fitness are some reasons epidemiologists suggest for increase in childhood obesity in the last 20 years, with clear correlation between body composition and physical activity and/or physical fitness yet to be determined. The objectives of the study were to (a) investigate the prevalence of overweight and obesity among Serbian school children and (b) determine the relationship between indicators of physical activity and body fatness in Serbian school children aged 6-14 years. The study subjects included a representative sample of Serbian elementary school children (n=1, 121—754 boys and 367 girls—aged 6.2-14.1 years), all of whom were recruited in the OLIMP (Obesity and Physical Activity among Serbian School Children) study. Anthropometric and physical fitness values, including body mass index (BMI), waist-circumference, body-fat, and aerobic capacity, were measured in all the children. Significant differences were found between male and female children regarding the prevalence of obesity (6.8% vs 8.2%, p<0.05, boys and girls respectively). Boys had significantly lower body mass, BMI, waist-circumference, sum of six skinfolds, and body-fat compared to their female counterparts (p<0.05). The highest level of weight, BMI, body-fat, and waist-circumference observed in a 14-year old girl (96.3 kg, 40.5 kg/m2, 54.5%, 91.4 cm respectively) implies the existence of extreme obesity in Serbian school children. The negative relationship between body-fat and maximal oxygen (VO2max) uptake was moderately high (r=-0.76; p<0.05). The study has shown a high prevalence of adiposity among Serbian school children, with a strong negative relationship between aerobic fitness and body fatness. Data of the study emphasize the necessity to identify children with weight problems and to develop early interventions to improve physical activity in children and prevent the increase of childhood obesity.
PMCID: PMC3075053  PMID: 21528790
Body-fat; Cross-sectional studies; Fitness; Girls; Obesity; Serbia
8.  Development of adiposity in adolescence: five year longitudinal study of an ethnically and socioeconomically diverse sample of young people in Britain 
BMJ : British Medical Journal  2006;332(7550):1130-1135.
Objective To examine the developmental trajectory of obesity in adolescence in relation to sex, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.
Design Five year longitudinal cohort study of a socioeconomically and ethnically diverse sample of school students aged 11-12 years at baseline.
Setting 36 London schools recruited to the study in 1999 by a stratified random sampling procedure.
Participants 5863 students participated in one or more years.
Main outcome measures Weight, height, and waist circumference measured annually by trained researchers; overweight and obesity defined according to International Obesity Task Force criteria; adiposity and central adiposity indexed by body mass index (BMI) and waist standard deviation scores relative to 1990 British reference values.
Results In school year 7 (age 11-12), the prevalence of overweight and obesity combined was almost 25%, with higher rates in girls (29%) and students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds (31%) and the highest rates in black girls (38%). Prevalence of obesity increased over the five years of the study at the expense of overweight, but no reduction occurred in the proportion of students with BMIs in the healthy range. Waist circumferences were high compared with 1990 norms at age 11 (by 0.79 SD in boys and by 1.15 SD in girls) and increased further over time. Both BMI and waist circumference tracked strongly over the five years.
Conclusions Prevalence of overweight and obesity was high in London school students, with significant socioeconomic and ethnic inequalities. Little evidence was found of new cases of overweight or obesity emerging over adolescence, but few obese or overweight adolescents reduced to a healthy weight. The results indicate that persistent obesity is established before age 11 and highlight the need to target efforts to prevent obesity in the early years.
doi:10.1136/bmj.38807.594792.AE
PMCID: PMC1459611  PMID: 16679329
9.  The association between accelerometer-measured patterns of sedentary time and health risk in children and youth: results from the Canadian Health Measures Survey 
BMC Public Health  2013;13:200.
Background
Self-reported screen time is associated with elevated health risk in children and youth; however, research examining the relationship between accelerometer-measured sedentary time and health risk has reported mixed findings. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between accelerometer-measured patterns of sedentary time and health risk in children and youth.
Methods
The results are based on 1,608 children and youth aged 6 to 19 years from the Canadian Health Measures Survey (2007–2009). Sedentary time was measured using the Actical accelerometer. Breaks in sedentary time and prolonged bouts of sedentary time lasting 20 to 120 minutes were derived for all days, weekend days and during the after-school period (i.e., after 3 pm on weekdays). Regression analyses were used to examine the association between patterns of sedentary time and body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, blood pressure and non-HDL cholesterol.
Results
Boys accumulated more sedentary time on weekdays after 3 pm and had a higher number of breaks in sedentary time compared to girls. Overweight/obese boys (aged 6–19 years) accumulated more sedentary time after 3 pm on weekdays (282 vs. 259 min, p < .05) and as prolonged bouts lasting at least 80 minutes (171 vs. 133 min, p < .05) compared to boys who were neither overweight nor obese. Prolonged bouts of sedentary time lasting at least 80 minutes accumulated after 3 pm on weekdays were positively associated with BMI and waist circumference in boys aged 11–14 years (p < .006). Each additional 60 min of sedentary time after 3 pm on weekdays was associated with a 1.4 kg·m-2 higher BMI and a 3.4 cm higher waist circumference in 11–14 year old boys. No sedentary pattern variables differed between girls who were not overweight or obese and those who were overweight/obese and none of the sedentary pattern variables were associated with any health markers in girls.
Conclusions
The findings confirm results of other studies that reported accelerometer-measured sedentary time was not associated with health risk in children and youth. Even when the pattern and timing of sedentary time was examined relative to health markers, few associations emerged and were limited to boys aged 11–14 years.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-200
PMCID: PMC3599834  PMID: 23497190
Behaviour; Breaks; Bouts; Physical activity; Pediatric
10.  Application of alternative anthropometric measurements to predict metabolic syndrome 
Clinics  2014;69(5):347-353.
OBJECTIVE:
The association between rarely used anthropometric measurements (e.g., mid-upper arm, forearm, and calf circumference) and metabolic syndrome has not been proven. The aim of this study was to assess whether mid-upper arm, forearm, calf, and waist circumferences, as well as waist/height ratio and waist-to-hip ratio, were associated with metabolic syndrome.
METHODS:
We enrolled 387 subjects (340 women, 47 men) who were admitted to the obesity outpatient department of Istanbul Medeniyet University Goztepe Training and Research Hospital between September 2010 and December 2010. The following measurements were recorded: waist circumference, hip circumference, waist/height ratio, waist-to-hip ratio, mid-upper arm circumference, forearm circumference, calf circumference, and body composition. Fasting blood samples were collected to measure plasma glucose, lipids, uric acid, insulin, and HbA1c.
RESULTS:
The odds ratios for visceral fat (measured via bioelectric impedance), hip circumference, forearm circumference, and waist circumference/hip circumference were 2.19 (95% CI, 1.30-3.71), 1.89 (95% CI, 1.07-3.35), 2.47 (95% CI, 1.24-4.95), and 2.11(95% CI, 1.26-3.53), respectively. The bioelectric impedance-measured body fat percentage correlated with waist circumference only in subjects without metabolic syndrome; the body fat percentage was negatively correlated with waist circumference/hip circumference in the metabolic syndrome group. All measurements except for forearm circumference were equally well correlated with the bioelectric impedance-measured body fat percentages in both groups. Hip circumference was moderately correlated with bioelectric impedance-measured visceral fat in subjects without metabolic syndrome. Muscle mass (measured via bioelectric impedance) was weakly correlated with waist and forearm circumference in subjects with metabolic syndrome and with calf circumference in subjects without metabolic syndrome.
CONCLUSION:
Waist circumference was not linked to metabolic syndrome in obese and overweight subjects; however, forearm circumference, an unconventional but simple and appropriate anthropometric index, was associated with metabolic syndrome and bioelectric impedance-measured visceral fat, hip circumference, and waist-to-hip ratio.
doi:10.6061/clinics/2014(05)09
PMCID: PMC4012236  PMID: 24838901
Metabolic Syndrome; Anthropometric Measurements; Body Composition
11.  The Double Burden of Obesity and Malnutrition in a Protracted Emergency Setting: A Cross-Sectional Study of Western Sahara Refugees 
PLoS Medicine  2012;9(10):e1001320.
Surveying women and children from refugee camps in Algeria, Carlos Grijalva-Eternod and colleagues find high rates of obesity among women as well as many undernourished children, and that almost a quarter of households are affected by both undernutrition and obesity.
Background
Households from vulnerable groups experiencing epidemiological transitions are known to be affected concomitantly by under-nutrition and obesity. Yet, it is unknown to what extent this double burden affects refugee populations dependent on food assistance. We assessed the double burden of malnutrition among Western Sahara refugees living in a protracted emergency.
Methods and Findings
We implemented a stratified nutrition survey in October–November 2010 in the four Western Sahara refugee camps in Algeria. We sampled 2,005 households, collecting anthropometric measurements (weight, height, and waist circumference) in 1,608 children (6–59 mo) and 1,781 women (15–49 y). We estimated the prevalence of global acute malnutrition (GAM), stunting, underweight, and overweight in children; and stunting, underweight, overweight, and central obesity in women. To assess the burden of malnutrition within households, households were first classified according to the presence of each type of malnutrition. Households were then classified as undernourished, overweight, or affected by the double burden if they presented members with under-nutrition, overweight, or both, respectively.
The prevalence of GAM in children was 9.1%, 29.1% were stunted, 18.6% were underweight, and 2.4% were overweight; among the women, 14.8% were stunted, 53.7% were overweight or obese, and 71.4% had central obesity. Central obesity (47.2%) and overweight (38.8%) in women affected a higher proportion of households than did GAM (7.0%), stunting (19.5%), or underweight (13.3%) in children. Overall, households classified as overweight (31.5%) were most common, followed by undernourished (25.8%), and then double burden–affected (24.7%).
Conclusions
The double burden of obesity and under-nutrition is highly prevalent in households among Western Sahara refugees. The results highlight the need to focus more attention on non-communicable diseases in this population and balance obesity prevention and management with interventions to tackle under-nutrition.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Good nutrition is essential for human health and survival. Insufficient food intake causes under-nutrition, which increases susceptibility to infections; intake of too much or inappropriate food, in particular in interaction with sedentary behaviour, can lead to obesity, which increases the risk of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes. During the past 30 years, the prevalence (the proportion of a population affected by a condition) of obesity has greatly increased, initially among adults in industrialized countries, but more recently among children and in less-affluent populations. Now, worldwide, overweight people outnumber under-nourished people. Furthermore, some populations are affected by both under-nutrition and obesity, forms of malnutrition that occur when the diet is suboptimal for health. So, for example, a child can be both stunted (short for his or her age, an indicator of long-term under-nutrition) and overweight (too heavy for his or her age). The emergence of this double burden of malnutrition has been attributed to the nutrition transition—the rapid move because of migration or urbanization to a lifestyle characterized by low levels of physical activity and high consumption of refined, energy-dense foods—without complete elimination of under-nutrition.
Why Was This Study Done?
Refugees are one group of people in whom under-nutrition and obesity sometimes coexist. Worldwide, in 2010, 15.4 million refugees were dependent on host governments and international humanitarian agencies for their food security and well-being. It is essential that these governments and organizations provide appropriate food assistance programs to refugees—policies that are appropriate during acute emergencies may not be appropriate in protracted emergencies and may contribute to the emergence of the double burden of malnutrition among refugees. Unfortunately, the extent to which the double burden of malnutrition affects refugees in protracted emergencies is unknown. In this cross-sectional study (an investigation that looks at the characteristics of a population at a single time), the researchers assessed the double burden of malnutrition among people from Western Sahara who have been living in four refugee camps near Tindouf city, Algeria, since 1975.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers used data from a 2010 survey that measured the height and weight of children and the height, weight, and waist circumference of women living in 2,005 households in the Algerian refugee camps. For the children, they estimated the prevalence of global acute malnutrition (which includes thin, “wasted” children, as indicated by a low weight for height based on the World Health Organization growth standards, and those with nutritional oedema), stunting, and underweight and overweight (low and high weight for age and gender, respectively). For the women, they estimated the prevalence of stunting, underweight (body mass index less than 18.5 kg/m2), overweight (body mass index greater than 25 kg/m2), and central obesity (a waist circumference of more than 80 cm). Among the children, 9.1% had global acute malnutrition, 29.1% were stunted, 8.6% were underweight, and 2.4% were overweight. Among the women, 14.8% were stunted, 53.7% were overweight, and 71.4% had central obesity. Notably, central obesity and overweight in women affected more households than global acute malnutrition, stunting, and underweight in children. Finally, based on whether a household included members with under-nutrition or overweight, alone or in combination, the researchers classified a third of households as overweight, a quarter as undernourished, and a quarter as affected by the double burden of malnutrition.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings indicate that there is a high prevalence of the double burden of malnutrition among households in Western Saharan refugee camps in Algeria. Although this study provides no information on men and does not investigate whether the obesity seen in these camps leads to an increased risk of diabetes and other non-communicable diseases, these findings have several important implications for the provision of food assistance and care for protracted humanitarian emergencies. For example, they highlight the need to promote long-term food security and to improve nutrition adequacy and food diversity in protracted emergencies. In addition, they suggest that current food assistance programs that are suitable for acute emergencies may not be suitable for extended emergencies. They also highlight the need to focus more attention on non-communicable diseases in refugee camps and to develop innovative ways to provide obesity prevention and management in these settings. However, as the researchers stress, careful policy and advocacy work is essential to ensure that efforts to deal with the threat of obesity among refugees do not jeopardize support for life-saving food assistance programs for refugees.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001320.
Wikipedia provides background information about the Western Sahara refugee camps near Tindouf, Algeria (note that Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit)
The World Health Organization provides information on all aspects of nutrition and obesity (in several languages)
The United Nations World Food Programme is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide; its website provides detailed information about hunger and information about its work in the Western Sahara refugee camps in Algeria, including personal stories and photographs of food distribution
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is the United Nations body mandated to lead and coordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide; its website provides detailed information about its work in the Western Sahara refugee camps in Algeria
Oxfam also provides detailed information about its work in the Algerian refugee camps, a description of the camps, and personal stories from people living in the camps
An article published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations explains the double burden of malnutrition
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001320
PMCID: PMC3462761  PMID: 23055833
12.  Augmenting BMI and Waist-Height Ratio for Establishing More Efficient Obesity Percentiles among School-going Children 
Research Questions
1. Are all the existing methods for estimating the obesity and overweight in school going children in India equally efficient? 2. How to derive more efficient obesity percentiles to determine obesity and overweight status in school-going children aged 7–12 years old?
Objectives
1. To investigate and analyze the prevalence rate of obesity and overweight children in India, using the established standards. 2. To compare the efficiency among the tools with the expected levels in the Indian population. 3. To establish and demonstrate the higher efficiency of the proposed percentile chart.
Study Design
A cross-sectional study using a completely randomized design.
Settings
Government, private-aided, unaided, and central schools in the Thrissur district of Kerala.
Participants
A total of 1500 boys and 1500 girls aged 7–12 years old.
Results
BMI percentiles, waist circumference percentiles, and waist to height ratio are the ruling methodologies in establishing the obese and overweight relations in school-going children. Each one suffers from the disadvantage of not considering either one or more of the obesity contributing factors in human growth dynamics, the major being waist circumference and weight. A new methodology for mitigating this defect through considering BMI and waist circumference simultaneously for establishing still efficient percentiles to arrive at obesity and overweight status is detailed here. Age-wise centiles for obesity and overweight status separately for boys and girls aged 7–12 years old were established. Comparative efficiency of this methodology over BMI had shown that this could mitigate the inability of BMI to consider waist circumference. Also, this had the advantage of considering body weight in obesity analysis, which is the major handicap in waist to height ratio. An analysis using a population of 1500 boys and 1500 girls has yielded 3.6% obese and 6.2% overweight samples, which is well within the accepted range for Indian school-going children.
Conclusion
The percentiles for school-going children based on age and sex were derived by comparing all other accepted standards used for measurement of obesity and overweight status. Hence, augmenting BMI and waist to height ratio is considered to be the most reliable method for establishing obesity percentiles among school-going children.
doi:10.4103/0970-0218.51233
PMCID: PMC2731976  PMID: 19714259
BMI; children; India; methodology; nutrition; overweight; percentile chart; waist circumference; waist-height ratio
13.  Augmenting BMI and Waist-Height Ratio for Establishing More Efficient Obesity Percentiles among School-going Children 
Research Questions:
1. Are all the existing methods for estimating the obesity and overweight in school going children in India equally efficient? 2. How to derive more efficient obesity percentiles to determine obesity and overweight status in school-going children aged 7-12 years old?
Objectives:
1. To investigate and analyze the prevalence rate of obesity and overweight children in India, using the established standards. 2. To compare the efficiency among the tools with the expected levels in the Indian population. 3. To establish and demonstrate the higher efficiency of the proposed percentile chart.
Study Design:
A cross-sectional study using a completely randomized design.
Settings:
Government, private-aided, unaided, and central schools in the Thrissur district of Kerala.
Participants:
A total of 1500 boys and 1500 girls aged 7-12 years old.
Results:
BMI percentiles, waist circumference percentiles, and waist to height ratio are the ruling methodologies in establishing the obese and overweight relations in school-going children. Each one suffers from the disadvantage of not considering either one or more of the obesity contributing factors in human growth dynamics, the major being waist circumference and weight. A new methodology for mitigating this defect through considering BMI and waist circumference simultaneously for establishing still efficient percentiles to arrive at obesity and overweight status is detailed here. Age-wise centiles for obesity and overweight status separately for boys and girls aged 7-12 years old were established. Comparative efficiency of this methodology over BMI had shown that this could mitigate the inability of BMI to consider waist circumference. Also, this had the advantage of considering body weight in obesity analysis, which is the major handicap in waist to height ratio. An analysis using a population of 1500 boys and 1500 girls has yielded 3.6% obese and 6.2% overweight samples, which is well within the accepted range for Indian school-going children.
Conclusion:
The percentiles for school-going children based on age and sex were derived by comparing all other accepted standards used for measurement of obesity and overweight status. Hence, augmenting BMI and waist to height ratio is considered to be the most reliable method for establishing obesity percentiles among school-going children.
doi:10.4103/0970-0218.51233
PMCID: PMC2731976  PMID: 19714259
BMI; children; India; methodology; nutrition; overweight; percentile chart; waist circumference; waist-height ratio
14.  Fatness, Fitness, and Cardiometabolic Risk Factors among Sixth-Grade Youth 
Purpose
Examine whether cardiometabolic risk factors are predicted by fitness or fatness among adolescents.
Methods
Participants are 4955 (2614 female) sixth-grade students with complete data from 42 US middle schools. Fasting blood samples were analyzed for total cholesterol, HDL- and LDL-cholesterol, triglyceride, glucose, and insulin concentrations. Waist circumference and blood pressure were assessed. Body mass index (BMI) was categorized as normal weight, overweight, or obese as a measure of fatness. Fitness was assessed using the multistage shuttle test and was converted into gender-specific quintiles. Gender-specific regression models, adjusted for race, pubertal status, and household education, were run to identify whether BMI group predicted risk factors. Models were repeated with fitness group and both fitness and fatness groups as predictors.
Results
Means for each risk factor (except HDL, which was the reverse) were significantly higher (P < 0.0001) with increased fatness and differed across all BMI groups (P < 0.001). Waist circumference, LDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, diastolic blood pressure, and insulin were inversely associated with fitness (P < 0.001). When both fatness and fitness were included in the model, BMI was associated (P < 0.001) with almost all cardiometabolic risk factors; fitness was only associated with waist circumference (both genders), LDL-cholesterol (males), and insulin (both genders). Other associations between fitness and cardiometabolic risk factors were attenuated after adjustment for BMI group.
Conclusions
Both fatness and fitness are associated with cardiometabolic risk factors among sixth-grade youth, but stronger associations were observed for fatness. Although maintaining high levels of fitness and preventing obesity may positively affect cardiometabolic risk factors, greater benefit may be obtained from obesity prevention.
doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e3181d322c4
PMCID: PMC2921216  PMID: 20139783
FIT; OBESITY; CHILDREN; ADOLESCENTS; CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE
15.  Sugar-sweetened carbonated beverage consumption correlates with BMI, waist circumference, and poor dietary choices in school children 
BMC Public Health  2010;10:234.
Background
The prevalence of obesity and overweight is increasing globally. Frequently coexisting with under-nutrition in developing countries, obesity is a major contributor to chronic disease, and will become a serious healthcare burden especially in countries with a larger percentage of youthful population. 35% of the population of Saudi Arabia are under the age of 16, and adult dietary preferences are often established during early childhood years. Our objective was to examine the dietary habits in relation to body-mass-index (BMI) and waist circumference (W_C), together with exercise and sleep patterns in a cohort of male and female Saudi school children, in order to ascertain whether dietary patterns are associated with obesity phenotypes in this population.
Methods
5033 boys and 4400 girls aged 10 to 19 years old participated in a designed Food Frequency Questionnaire. BMI and W_C measurements were obtained and correlated with dietary intake.
Results
The overall prevalence of overweight and obesity was 12.2% and 27.0% respectively, with boys having higher obesity rates than girls (P ≤ 0.001). W_C and BMI was positively correlated with sugar-sweetened carbonated beverage (SSCB) intake in boys only. The association between male BMI and SSCB consumption was significant in a multivariate regression model (P < 0.0001). SSCB intake was positively associated with poor dietary choices in both males and females. Fast food meal intake, savory snacks, iced desserts and total sugar consumption correlated with SSCB intake in both boys (r = 0.39, 0.13, 0.10 and 0.52 respectively, P < 0.001) and girls (r = 0.45, 0.23, 0.16 and 0.55 respectively, P < 0.001). Older children reported eating significantly less fruit and vegetables than younger children; and less eggs, fish and cereals. Conversely, consumption of SSCB and sugar-sweetened hot beverages were higher in older versus younger children (P < 0.001). BMI and W_C were negatively correlated with hours of night-time sleep and exercise in boys, but only with night time sleep in girls, who also showed the lowest frequency of exercise.
Conclusions
A higher intake of SSCB is associated with poor dietary choices. Male SSCB intake correlates with a higher W_C and BMI. Limiting exposure to SSCB could therefore have a large public health impact.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-10-234
PMCID: PMC2877673  PMID: 20459689
16.  Relationship between the intensity of physical activity, inactivity, cardiorespiratory fitness and body composition in 7–10‐year‐old Dublin children 
Objective
To investigate the relationships between the time spent in specific intensities of activity and inactivity, cardiorespiratory fitness and body composition in children.
Methods
A cross‐sectional study was conducted in a random sample of schools. Height, weight and waist circumference were measured in 224 children aged 7–10 years. Cardiorespiratory fitness was estimated by the 20 m multistage running test, and physical activity was measured over 4 days by the RT3 (a triaxial accelerometer). Time each day spent in moderate and vigorous intensities of activity was calculated.
Results
Twelve schools agreed to participate in the study. Body composition and fitness data were obtained for 224 children and activity data for 152 children. Boys were found to take part in about twice as much vigorous and hard activity as girls (mean (95% confidence interval) 64.3 (53.2 to 75.4) min in boys compared with 37 (33.1 to 40.9) min in girls; p<0.001). In boys there was significant difference between those defined as normal, overweight and obese in the time spent in vigorous activity (p<0.05), but no such difference was found in girls. A significant negative correlation between waist circumference and time spent in vigorous activity (r = –0.31, p<0.05) was found in boys but not in girls. Time spent sedentary was positively correlated with waist circumference in boys (r = 0.33, p<0.01) but not in girls. In both boys and girls there were significant negative correlations between fitness and both body mass index (r = –0.274, p<0.001) and waist circumference (boys: r = –0.503, p<0.01; girls: r = –0.286, p<0.01).
Conclusion
In boys, body composition was inversely related to fitness and to vigorous activity and was positively related to inactivity. In girls, body composition was related to fitness but not to specific components of physical activity.
doi:10.1136/bjsm.2006.032045
PMCID: PMC2659066  PMID: 17395610
physical activity; cardiorespiratory fitness; accelerometers; body composition
17.  Blood pressure and associated factors in a North African adolescent population. a national cross-sectional study in Tunisia 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:98.
Background
In southern and eastern Mediterranean countries, changes in lifestyle and the increasing prevalence of excess weight in childhood are risk factors for high blood pressure (BP) during adolescence and adulthood. The aim of this study was to evaluate the BP status of Tunisian adolescents and to identify associated factors.
Methods
A cross-sectional study in 2005, based on a national, stratified, random cluster sample of 1294 boys and 1576 girls aged 15-19 surveyed in home visits. The socio-economic and behavioral characteristics of the adolescents were recorded. Overweight/obesity were assessed by Body Mass Index (BMI) from measured height and weight (WHO, 2007), abdominal obesity by waist circumference (WC). BP was measured twice during the same visit. Elevated BP was systolic (SBP) or diastolic blood pressure (DBP) ≥ 90th of the international reference or ≥ 120/80 mm Hg for 15-17 y., and SBP/DBP ≥ 120/80 mm Hg for 18-19 y.; hypertension was SBP/DBP ≥ 95th for 15-17 y. and ≥ 140/90 mm Hg for 18-19 y. Adjusted associations were assessed by logistic regression.
Results
The prevalence of elevated BP was 35.1%[32.9-37.4]: higher among boys (46.1% vs. 33.3%; P < 0.0001); 4.7%[3.8-5.9] of adolescents had hypertension. Associations adjusted for all covariates showed independent relationships with BMI and WC: - obesity vs. no excess weight increased elevated BP (boys OR = 2.1[1.0-4.2], girls OR = 2.3[1.3-3.9]) and hypertension (boys OR = 3.5[1.4-8.9], girls OR = 5.4[2.2-13.4]), - abdominal obesity (WC) was also associated with elevated BP in both genders (for boys: 2nd vs. 1st tertile OR = 1.7[1.3-2.3], 3rd vs.1st tertile OR = 2.8[1.9-4.2]; for girls: 2nd vs. 1st tertile OR = 1.6[1.2-2.1], 3rd vs.1st tertile OR = 2.1[1.5-3.0]) but only among boys for hypertension. Associations with other covariates were weaker: for boys, hypertension increased somewhat with sedentary lifestyle, while elevated BP was slightly more prevalent among urban girls and those not attending school.
Conclusion
Within the limits of BP measurement on one visit only, these results suggest that Tunisian adolescents of both genders are likely not spared from early elevated BP. Though further assessment is likely needed, the strong association with overweight/obesity observed suggests that interventions aimed at changing lifestyles to reduce this main risk factor may also be appropriate for the prevention of elevated BP.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-98
PMCID: PMC3331812  PMID: 22305045
Adolescent; Blood pressure; Tunisia; Prevalence; Risk factors
18.  Physical activity, overweight and central adiposity in Swedish children and adolescents: the European Youth Heart Study 
Background
The aim of this work was to study the associations of physical activity (PA) and other factors predisposing to overweight, with overweight and central adiposity in children and adolescents.
Methods
A total of 557 Swedish children (9.5 ± 0.3 y) and 517 adolescents (15.6 ± 0.4 y) from the European Youth Heart Study participated in this study. Logistic regression analyses were used to examine the associations of PA, as measured by accelerometry, and other determinants (i.e. television viewing, birth weight, maternal educational level and parental overweight) with total and central adiposity. Body mass index and waist circumference cut-off values proposed by the IOTF and the Bogalusa Heart Study (i.e. waist measures for predicting risk factors clustering, hereinafter called high-risk waist circumference), respectively, were used. Fatness was estimated from skinfold thicknesses and dichotomized using the 85th sex- and age-specific percentile (high/low).
Results
Children and adolescents who had a low level (first tertile) of vigorous PA, were more likely to be overweight (including obesity) and to have a high-risk waist circumference, than those with a high level (third tertile) of vigorous PA. Similarly, those subjects who had a low or middle level (second tertile) of total PA were more likely to be overweight than those who had a high level of total PA. Among the PA variables, only vigorous PA was associated with high total fatness. Birth weight and television viewing, were also associated with higher odds of having a high-risk waist circumference, but these associations were attenuated once either total or vigorous PA variable was included in the model. Those subjects who had two overweight parents were more likely to be overweight and to have a high-risk waist circumference independently of PA variables, compared to those whose parents were not overweight.
Conclusion
Low levels of total PA and especially vigorous PA may play an important role in the development of overweight and excess of central adiposity in children and adolescents, independently of a number of factors such as television viewing and birth weight. In addition, the data suggest that the association between television viewing and central fat deposition could be attenuated if enough vigorous PA is accumulated. Longitudinal and intervention studies are needed to confirm these findings.
doi:10.1186/1479-5868-4-61
PMCID: PMC2211506  PMID: 18021444
19.  Dual burden of body weight among Iranian children and adolescents in 2003 and 2010: the CASPIAN-III study 
Introduction
Our aim was to compare changes of body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) curves of Iranian children by comparing the results of two national surveys of a surveillance program, i.e. CASPIAN-I (2003–2004) and CASPIAN-III (2009–2010). The second objective was to evaluate the prevalence of obesity, overweight and underweight among 10–18-year-old Iranian children and adolescents.
Material and methods
This study was performed among students who were selected by multistage random cluster sampling from urban and rural areas of 27 provinces of Iran, as part of a national survey of school student high risk behavior entitled CASPIAN-III, conducted in 2009–2010.
Results
We evaluated 5088 school students (50.2% boys). In rural areas, underweight was more common in boys and overweight and obesity in girls. In urban areas underweight and obesity were more common in boys, whereas overweight was more common in girls. The highest prevalence of underweight (23.5%) was seen in students aged 13 years and the lowest (11.4%) in those aged 18 years. Underweight was significantly more common in rural than in urban areas (22.1% vs. 15.8%, respectively, p < 0.0001) and overweight/obesity was more common in urban than in rural areas. Compared with the findings in 2003–2004, the overall prevalence of elevated body mass index (16.6%) including obesity (9.1%) and overweight (7.5%) as well as underweight (17.5%) increased from 2003 to 2010.
Conclusions
In recent years, the double burden of nutritional disorders has increased among Iranian children and adolescents, especially in rural areas. This change may be related to epidemiologic transition, notably in terms of nutrition transition and rapid changes in lifestyle habits. This finding is an important issue for policy-makers for interventional preventive programs.
doi:10.5114/aoms.2014.40735
PMCID: PMC3953979  PMID: 24701221
obesity; underweight; waist circumference; body mass index; pediatric age
20.  Associations of Sedentary Behavior, Sedentary Bouts and Breaks in Sedentary Time with Cardiometabolic Risk in Children with a Family History of Obesity 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(11):e79143.
Background
Although reports in adults suggest that breaks in sedentary time are associated with reduced cardiometabolic risk, these findings have yet to be replicated in children.
Purpose
To investigate whether objectively measured sedentary behavior, sedentary bouts or breaks in sedentary time are independently associated with cardiometabolic risk in a cohort of Canadian children aged 8–11 years with a family history of obesity.
Methods
Data from 286 boys and 236 girls living in Quebec, Canada, with at least one biological parent with obesity (QUALITY cohort) were collected from 2005–2008, and analyzed in 2013. Sedentary behavior, light and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity were measured over 7 days using accelerometry. Leisure time computer/video game use and TV viewing over the past 7 days were self-reported. Outcomes included waist circumference, body mass index Z-score, fasting insulin, fasting glucose, triglycerides, HDL-cholesterol, C-reactive protein and a continuous cardiometabolic risk score.
Results
After adjustment for confounders, breaks in sedentary time and the number of sedentary bouts lasting 1–4 minutes were associated with reduced cardiometabolic risk score and lower BMI Z-score in both sexes (all p<0.05). The number of sedentary bouts lasting 5–9 minutes was negatively associated with waist circumference in girls only, while the number of bouts lasting 10–14 minutes was positively associated with fasting glucose in girls, and with BMI Z-score in boys (all p<0.05). Leisure time computer/video game use was associated with increased cardiometabolic risk score and waist circumference in boys, while TV viewing was associated with increased cardiometabolic risk, waist circumference, and BMI Z-score in girls (all p<0.05).
Conclusions
These results suggest that frequent interruptions in sedentary time are associated with a favourable cardiometabolic risk profile and highlight the deleterious relationship between screen time and cardiometabolic risk among children with a family history of obesity.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0079143
PMCID: PMC3835898  PMID: 24278117
21.  Ethnic and gender differences in body fat in British schoolchildren as measured by DXA 
Archives of Disease in Childhood  2007;92(10):872-875.
Background
There are known to be ethnic differences in body composition in adults which are related to ethnic differences in adult disease.
Objectives
To evaluate gender and ethnic differences in percentage body fat in British schoolchildren and to compare these differences with classification of obesity using body mass index (BMI) criteria.
Design
A cross‐sectional study of 1251 healthy children and adolescents aged 5–18 years from white, South Asian and African‐Caribbean ethnic groups. Percentage body fat was determined by dual x ray absorptiometry and the subjects classified using BMI criteria for overweight and obesity.
Results
Significant gender differences in percentage body fat were seen, with girls having higher values from the age of 5 years. Girls had 3.8% higher percentage body fat at 5 years of age increasing to 12.9% at 18 years of age. Significant ethnic differences were found, with South Asian girls and boys having the highest percentage body fat from 5 and 7 years of age, respectively. These differences increased with age, being most significant in the teenage years. Although South Asian girls and boys were over‐represented in the group containing children with more than 25% body fat (p<0.0001, χ2 test), African‐Caribbean subjects were more likely to be classified as obese using BMI criteria.
Conclusions
There are clear gender and ethnic differences in percentage body fat in British schoolchildren which may relate to known differences in the risk of type 2 diabetes in adolescence and adulthood. BMI criteria for defining overweight and obesity do not accurately identify ethnic differences in body fat.
doi:10.1136/adc.2007.117911
PMCID: PMC2083240  PMID: 17522163
body composition; ethnic groups; body mass index
22.  Parental education associations with children’s body composition: mediation effects of energy balance-related behaviors within the ENERGY-project 
Background
It is well known that the prevalence of overweight and obesity is considerably higher among youth from lower socio-economic families, but there is little information about the role of some energy balance-related behaviors in the association between socio-economic status and childhood overweight and obesity. The objective of this paper was to assess the possible mediation role of energy balance-related behaviors in the association between parental education and children’s body composition.
Methods
Data were obtained from the cross sectional study of the “EuropeaN Energy balance Research to prevent excessive weight Gain among Youth” (ENERGY) project. 2121 boys and 2516 girls aged 10 to 12 from Belgium, Greece, Hungary, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia and Spain were included in the analyses. Data were obtained via questionnaires assessing obesity related dietary, physical activity and sedentary behaviors and basic anthropometric objectively measured indicators (weight, height, waist circumference). The possible mediating effect of sugared drinks intake, breakfast consumption, active transportation to school, sports participation, TV viewing, computer use and sleep duration in the association between parental education and children’s body composition was explored via MacKinnon’s product-of-coefficients test in single and multiple mediation models. Two different body composition indicators were included in the models, namely Body Mass Index and waist circumference.
Results
The association between parental education and children’s body composition was partially mediated by breakfast consumption, sports participation, TV viewing and computer use. Additionally, a suppression effect was found for sugared drinks intake. No mediation effect was found for active transportation and sleep duration. The significant mediators explained a higher proportion of the association between parental education and waist circumference compared to the association between parental education and BMI.
Conclusions
Tailored overweight and obesity prevention strategies in low SES preadolescent populations should incorporate specific messages focusing on the importance of encouraging daily breakfast consumption, increasing sports participation and decreasing TV viewing and computer use. However, longitudinal research to support these findings is needed.
doi:10.1186/1479-5868-10-80
PMCID: PMC3695820  PMID: 23800170
Mediation analysis; Body composition; Parental education; Childhood obesity; Energy balance-related behaviors
23.  Longitudinal Study of Growth and Adiposity in Parous Compared With Nulligravid Adolescents 
Objective
To examine the impact of pregnancy on adolescent growth and adiposity relative to nulligravidas of similar maturation stage.
Design
Prospective cohort study.
Setting
The multicenter National Heart, Lung and Blood Growth and Health Study with annual examinations from 1987-1988 through 1996-1997.
Participants
One thousand eight hundred ninety girls (983 black and 907 white) aged 9 to 10 years at enrollment.
Main Exposure
Self-reported number of pregnancies and births during adolescence and young adulthood (age, 15-19 years): 311 primiparas (17%), 84 multiparas (4%), 196 nulliparous gravidas (10%), and 1299 nulligravidas (69%).
Outcome Measures
Estimated race-specific changes in body weight, height, body mass index, waist circumference, hip circumference, waist to hip ratio, and percent body fat, defined as the difference between baseline and measurements 9 to 10 years later.
Results
Thirty-one percent of black and 10% of white girls gave birth during adolescence and young adulthood. We found evidence of race by pregnancy interactions (P < .10) for changes in weight, body mass index, hip circumference, and percent body fat. Black primiparas and multiparas, respectively, had smaller decrements in waist to hip ratio (0.019 and 0.023) and greater increments in weight (3.6 and 6.0 kg), body mass index (1.3 and 2.3), waist circumference (3.5 and 5.2 cm), hip circumference (2.1 and 4.0 cm), and percent body fat (3.4% and 4.6%) than black nulligravidas after adjustment for baseline measurements, age, study center, family income, parental education, age at menarche, hours of television and video viewing, and height at visit 9 or 10 in weight models (P < .01). White primiparas had borderline greater increments in waist circumference (2.4 cm) and percent body fat (0.9%) and smaller decrements in waist to hip ratio (0.017) than white nulligravidas (P < .05). Height did not differ by pregnancy status.
Conclusions
Women who give birth during adolescence and young adulthood have substantially greater increments in overall and central adiposity than adolescents who do not experience pregnancy independent of other known correlates of weight gain.
doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2009.9
PMCID: PMC2952439  PMID: 19349564
24.  Relation of Circulating Oxidized LDL to Obesity and Insulin Resistance in Children 
Pediatric diabetes  2010;11(8):552-555.
Introduction
Circulating oxidized LDL, a marker of oxidative stress, is associated with obesity, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, and cardiovascular disease in adults. However, little is known about its relation to insulin resistance and cardiovascular risk factors in children. The purpose of this study was to assess the relation of oxidative stress, measured by circulating oxidized LDL, with measures of adiposity and insulin resistance in children.
Methods
Oxidized LDL, measures of body fatness (body mass index: BMI, percent body fat, waist circumference, percent trunk fat, abdominal visceral and subcutaneous fat), insulin resistance with euglycemic insulin clamp (Mlbm), blood pressure, and blood lipids were obtained in 78 children. Oxidized LDL was compared between normal weight children (BMI < 85th percentile) and overweight/obese children (BMI ≥ 85th percentile) and levels were evaluated for associations with body fatness and insulin resistance.
Results
Oxidized LDL levels were significantly higher in overweight/obese vs. normal weight children (p < 0.0001). Oxidized LDL was significantly correlated with BMI, percent body fat, waist circumference, percent trunk fat, abdominal visceral fat, and abdominal subcutaneous fat (all p-values < 0.0001). Moreover, oxidized LDL was negatively correlated with Mlbm, even after adjustment for adiposity (p < 0.01).
Conclusions
Oxidized LDL is significantly associated with adiposity and with insulin resistance, independent of body fatness, in children. Oxidative stress may be independently related to the development of insulin resistance early in life, especially in obese youth.
doi:10.1111/j.1399-5448.2009.00640.x
PMCID: PMC2891779  PMID: 20102528
Oxidized LDL; obesity; insulin resistance; children
25.  The Associations between Anthropometric Indices and Obstructive Sleep Apnea in a Korean Population 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(12):e114463.
Background
Obesity is a major risk factor for the development of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Although clinical and epidemiological studies have shown that OSA and obesity are strongly associated, few Asian studies have examined the associations between anthropometric obesity indices and OSA, especially in the Korean population. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the influence of anthropometric obesity indices on OSA in a Korean population.
Methods
Anthropometric indices, including neck circumference, waist circumference, and body mass index, were assessed in 383 consecutive subjects with suspected OSA.
Results
Of the 383 subjects assessed, 316 (82.5%) were diagnosed with OSA. Neck circumference (r = 0.518), waist circumference (r = 0.570), and body mass index (r = 0.512) were correlated with the apnea-hypopnea index (p<0.001, for all). After adjusting for age, sex, alcohol consumption, and smoking, a logistic regression model showed that neck circumference [odds ratio (OR), 1.414; p<0.001)], waist circumference (OR, 1.114; p<0.001), and body mass index (OR, 1.364; p<0.001) were associated with OSA. The linear regression model showed that neck circumference (β = 3.748, p<0.001), waist circumference (β = 1.272, p<0.001), and body mass index (β = 3.082, p<0.001) were associated with apnea-hypopnea index. The cut-off values for predicting OSA were determined as 34.5 cm for neck circumference, 76.5 cm for waist circumference, and 23.05 kg/m2 for body mass index for females, and 38.75 cm for neck circumference, 88.5 cm for waist circumference, and 24.95 kg/m2 for body mass index for males.
Conclusion
Increased anthropometric indices were significantly associated with the presence and severity of OSA in a Korean population. In addition, this study demonstrated the cut-off values for body mass index, waist circumference, and neck circumference for increased OSA risk.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0114463
PMCID: PMC4256422  PMID: 25474257

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