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1.  Changes in serum lipid profile of obese or overweight children and adolescents following a lifestyle modification course 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2012;8(3):143-148 .
Considering rapid global increase in children obesity and high prevalence of dyslipidemia in obese and overweight children, this study aimed to evaluate the effect of an educational course on changes of lipid profile in children.
This non-pharmacological clinical trial study was performed on 4-18 year-old children attending outpatient clinics of Isfahan Endocrine and Metabolism Research Center (Iran). Anthropometric measurements were conducted for all children. Fasting blood samples were taken from right hand of the participants at the first laboratory visit. Biochemical tests including measurement of total cholesterol (TC), triglyceride (TG), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) were also carried out. Children took part in one educational session in which they were taught about ways and benefits of having regular physical activity once a day and having healthy foods. All children were followed up for about four months and anthropometrics and biochemical tests were repeated. Data was analyzed using SPSS16.
A total number of 412 children (245 girls and 167 boys) were divided into four age groups of under 6, 6-9, 10-13, and 14-18 years old. Baseline anthropometric measures were significantly higher in boys. However, there was no difference between boys and girls in baseline lipid profile. Children's body mass index (BMI) z-score increased in all age groups except for 14-18 year-old boys. In boys older than 10 years, there were significant reductions in LDL-C and TC. In girls over 10 years of age, there was a significant increase in HDL-C. Although anthropometric measurements did not change in children (except for 14-18 year-old-boys), there was a significant reduction in children's lipid profile after the study.
Our study showed that although one session of interventional education had no significant effects on children's anthropometric measurements, it could change their lipid profile. Moreover, the intervention was more effective on improving lipid profile in children over 10 years of age. Therefore, effective interventional strategies must be invented and implemented on children based on their age group.
PMCID: PMC3557010  PMID: 23359278
Children Obesity; Education; Anthropometry; Lipid Profile; Lifestyle
2.  The Effects of an Exercise Program on Anthropometric, Metabolic, and Cardiovascular Parameters in Obese Children 
Korean Circulation Journal  2010;40(4):179-184.
Background and Objectives
Obesity is a chronic disease that requires good eating habits and an active life style. Obesity may start in childhood and continue until adulthood. Severely obese children have complications such as diabetes, hypercholesterolemia, hypertension and atherosclerosis. The goal of this study was to determine the effects of exercise programs on anthropometric, metabolic, and cardiovascular parameters in obese children.
Subjects and Methods
Fifty four obese children were included. Anthropometric data such as blood pressures, body mass index (BMI) and obesity index (OI) were measured. Blood glucose, total cholesterol, triglycerides, low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C), high density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), high sensitive-CRP (hs-CRP), brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (BaPWV) and ankle brachial index (ABI) were measured. Physical fitness measurements were done. Obese children were divided into three groups: an aerobic exercise group (n=16), a combined exercise group (n=20), and a control group (n=18). Obese children exercised in each program for 10 weeks while those in the control group maintained their former lifestyle. After 10 weeks, anthropometric data and cardiovascular parameters were compared with the data obtained before the exercise program.
LDL-C, waist circumference, and systolic blood pressure decreased significantly in the aerobic exercise group compared to the control group (p<0.05). Waist circumference and systolic blood pressure decreased significantly in the combined exercise group compared to controls (p<0.05). Physical fitness level increased significantly after the exercise programs (p<0.05 vs. control). PWV did not show a significant change after exercise.
A short-term exercise program can play an important role in decreasing BMI, blood pressure, waist circumference, LDL-C and in improving physical fitness. Future investigations are now necessary to clarify the effectiveness of exercise on various parameters.
PMCID: PMC2859335  PMID: 20421958
Obesity; Exercise; Cardiovascular disease
3.  A family-based education program for obesity: a three-year study 
BMC Pediatrics  2007;7:33.
The epidemic of obesity is increasing in all countries. However, the number of controlled studies focusing on childhood obesity, with a long follow-up is still limited. Even though Behavioral Therapy shows some efficacy, it requires a prolonged teamwork that is not always available in public health settings. In addition, Behavioral Therapy is not always accepted. We describe a new intensive and sustainable family-based, Therapeutic Education program for childhood obesity.
Controlled clinical study: a family-based Therapeutic Education program without dietetic prescription involving overweight and obese children/adolescents, without evident psychological troubles, and their families. The program consisted of three clinical and therapeutic education sessions, carried out by a single physician. Further sessions were carried out every six months in the first year and then every year.
Study population: 190 overweight children, 85 treated with a therapeutic education program (45 males and 40 females, mean age of 10.43 ± 3) with an average BMI% of 154.72 ± 19.6% and 105 matched children, treated with traditional dietary approach.
Children's Body Mass Index (BMI) % and BMI Standard Deviation Score measured at baseline and after a three year-follow-up, were compared. Statistical tests: ANOVA-RM (repeated measures) controlled for distribution by Kolmogorov-Smirnov, Bartlett's test or correspondent non-parametric procedures, X2 tests or Fisher's exact test and simple linear regression.
After a follow-up of 2.7 ± 1.1 years, 72.9% of the children who followed the Therapeutic Education Program obtained a BMI% reduction, compared to 42.8% of children who followed the traditional dietary treatment. Weight reduction was good in moderately obese children and in the severely obese. In addition, a smaller proportion of children treated with therapeutic education had negative results (BMI increase of >10%) compared to those treated with dietary approach (11.8% vs. 25.7%); finally, periodic phone calls reduced the drop-out rate in the therapeutic education group.
These results indicate the efficacy and sustainability of the Therapeutic Education program, that was completely carried out by a single pediatrician; in addition, it met with an elevated participant acceptance, suggesting a convenient therapeutic solution for skilled pediatricians and selected obese children, when Behavioral Therapy is not available or teamwork is poor.
PMCID: PMC2194673  PMID: 17953755
4.  A study on metabolic variables and its association with high sensitive C-reactive protein in obese children and adolescents 
Obesity in children and adolescents predispose to the development of obesity in adulthood and subsequent cardiovascular disease. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) is a marker of low grade inflammatory state, which characterizes an atherosclerotic process. The aim of this study was to assess the metabolic abnormalities and its association with hsCRP in obese children and adolescents. A total of 62 obese children and adolescents and 24 healthy children and adolescents with a normal weight were recruited. In all subjects, anthropometric and biochemical parameters were measured. Body mass index (BMI) and blood pressure were significantly higher in the obese children and adolescents than the control. Obese children had significantly higher hsCRP levels (P < 0.001), total cholesterol, triglyceride, low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) and lower high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol than the control group. Furthermore, homeostatic model assessment-insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) was significantly higher in obese children compared with the normal weight children. Furthermore, hsCRP showed a positive correlation with BMI (r = 0.357; P = 0.028), total cholesterol (r = 0.367; P = 0.008) and LDL-C (r = 0.356; P = 0.01), insulin (r = 0.311; P = 0.026) and not with HOMA-IR (r = 0.244; P = 0.084)). In conclusion, obese children and adolescents have significantly increased hsCRP compared with a normal weight group. Early intervention and prevention of obesity in children and adolescents decreases cardiovascular disease in later life.
PMCID: PMC3830361  PMID: 24251215
Cardiovascular risk; high sensitive C-reactive protein; obesity
5.  Anthropometric indices associated with dyslipidemia in obese children and adolescents: a retrospective study in isfahan 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2011;7(1):31-39.
Central obesity is an important risk factor for cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Preventive interventions from childhood are necessary due to the increasing prevalence of childhood obesity. Body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), waist to hip ratio (WHR) and waist to height ratio (WSR) are anthropometric indices for measurement of obesity. This study aimed to assess the association between these anthropometric indices and dyslipidemia in obese children and adolescents.
This retrospective study was done on the records of 2064 obese children and adolescents aged 6-18 years at the obesity clinic, in Isfahan Cardiovascular Research center. Age, gender, weight, height, WC, hip circumference (HC), triglyceride (TG), total cholesterol (TC), LDL-cholesterol (LDL-C), HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C), Fasting blood sugar (FBS), diastolic blood pressure (DBP) and systolic blood pressure (SBP) were taken from patients’ record. Receiver operating characteristics (ROC) curve and Pearson correlation were used to analyze the data.
2064 girls and boys aged 6-18 years were divided into 3 age groups of 6-9.9 years, 10-13.9 years and 14-18 years. Prevalence of high LDL-C, TC, TG, FBS, SBP, DBP and low HDL-C was higher among the boys compared to the girls. There was a significant association between TC, LDL-C, TG and FBS with BMI, WC, WHR and WSR. However, no significant correlation was seen between HDL-C and the four anthropometric indices.
Our study showed a significant correlation between BMI, WC and WSR with high levels of TC, TG and LDL-C in children and adolescents. Correlation between WHR and dyslipidemia in this study was significant but its predictive value was weaker than other three indices.
PMCID: PMC3347839  PMID: 22577442
Body Mass Index; Waist Circumference; Waist to Hip Ratio; Waist to Height Ratio; Dyslipidemia; Children; Adolescents
6.  Characterizing severe obesity in children and youth referred for weight management 
BMC Pediatrics  2014;14:154.
Severe obesity (SO) in pediatrics has become increasing prevalent in recent decades.
The objective of our study was to examine differences in demographic, anthropometric, cardiometabolic, and lifestyle variables in children and youth with SO versus their less overweight/obese (OW/OB) peers.
A retrospective medical record review of 6-19 year old participants enrolled in an outpatient pediatric weight management clinic was conducted. SO (body mass index [BMI] ≥99th percentile) and OW/OB (BMI ≥85th and <99th percentile) groups were created according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention definitions. Demographic, anthropometric, cardiometabolic and lifestyle data reported at baseline (pre-intervention) were retrieved.
Of the 345 participants, most were girls (56.2%), Caucasian (78.7%), and had family incomes > $50,000/year (65.7%). The SO group (n = 161) had lower HDL-cholesterol and higher liver enzymes, insulin resistance and blood pressure than the OW/OB group (n = 184; all p < 0.01). They also reported higher total energy intakes, fewer steps/day, less moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, and more leisure time screen time (all p < 0.02) than their leaner peers. Compared to the OW/OB group, a higher proportion of individuals in the SO group possessed cardiometabolic risk factors, including high triglycerides (45.8% vs 58.5%), alanine aminotransferase (55.4% vs 81.4%), insulin resistance (55.6% vs 82.1%), systolic blood pressure (11.5% vs 27.3%), diastolic blood pressure (17.8% vs 30.0%), and low HDL-cholesterol (44.6% vs 64.6%; all p < 0.02). Aside from the ~75% of participants (groups combined) who met the daily recommended intakes of grain and meat products, <50% of boys and girls met any of the remaining nutrition and physical activity-related recommendations. Compared to the OW/OB group, greater proportions of children and youth in the SO group failed to meet moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (48.4% vs 31.9%) and leisure-time-screen-time recommendations (43.4% vs 28.3%; both p < 0.05).
Children and youth with SO have a worse cardiometabolic profile and less favorable lifestyle habits than their OW/OB peers. These differences emphasize the heightened obesity-related health risks associated with SO in the pediatric years.
PMCID: PMC4074846  PMID: 24947311
Severe obesity; Pediatric; Cardiometabolic risk; Nutrition; Physical activity; Canada
7.  Marital status and educational level associated to obesity in Greek adults: data from the National Epidemiological Survey 
BMC Public Health  2010;10:732.
Obesity is an important public health issue and its prevalence is reaching epidemic proportions in both developed and developing countries. The aim of the present study was to determine associations of overweight (OW), obesity (OB) and abdominal obesity (AO) with marital status and educational level in Greek adults of both genders based on data from the National Epidemiological Survey on the prevalence of obesity.
The selection was conducted by stratified sampling through household family members of Greek children attending school during 2003. A total of 17,341 Greek men and women aged from 20 to 70 years participated in the survey and had anthropometric measurements (height, weight, and waist circumference) for the calculation of prevalence of OW, OB and AO. WHO cut-offs were used to define overweight and obesity categories. Waist circumference of more than 102 cm in men and 88 cm in women defined AO. Marital status and educational level were recorded using a specially designed questionnaire and were classified into 4 categories.
The overall prevalence of OB was 22.3% (25.8% in men, 18.4% in women), that of OW 35.2% (41.0% in men, 29.8% in women) and that of AO 26.4% in men and 35.9% in women. Ahigher risk of OB was found in married men (OR: 2.28; 95% CI: 1.85-2.81) and married women (OR: 2.31; 95% CI: 1.73-3.10) than in the respective unmarried ones. Also, a higher risk of AO was found in married men (OR: 3.40; 95% CI: 2.86-4.03) and in married women (OR: 2.40; 95% CI 2.00-2.88) compared to unmarried ones. The risk for being obese was lower among educated women (primary school, OR: 0.76; 95% CI: 0.60-0.96, high school, OR: 0.58; 95% CI: 0.46-0.74 and University, OR: 0.64; 95% CI: 0.49-0.81) than among illiterates. No significant differences were found among men.
In Greek adults, marital status was significantly associated with obesity and abdominal obesity status in both genders while educational level was inversely associated with obesity status only in women.
PMCID: PMC3004837  PMID: 21110843
8.  Effects on Metabolic Health after a 1-Year-Lifestyle Intervention in Overweight and Obese Children: A Randomized Controlled Trial 
Objective. To evaluate the effect of a family-based intervention on anthropometric and metabolic markers in overweight and obese children. Methods. Overweight or obese 8–12 years olds (n = 93) were randomized into intervention or control groups. The intervention group participated in a program aiming for lifestyle changes regarding food habits and physical activity. Anthropometric measures and venous blood samples were collected from all children at baseline and after 1 year. Results. BMI z-scores decreased in both groups, 0.22 (P = 0.002) and 0.23 (P = 0.003) in intervention and control group, respectively, during the 1-year study, but there was no difference in BMI between the groups at 1-year measurement (P = 0.338). After 1 year, there was a significant difference in waist circumference, waist/hip ratio, and apolipoprotein B/A1 ratio between intervention and control group. Conclusions. The intervention had limited effects on anthropometrics and metabolic markers, which emphasizes the need of preventing childhood overweight and obesity.
PMCID: PMC3176428  PMID: 21941639
9.  The CANadian Pediatric Weight Management Registry (CANPWR): Study protocol 
BMC Pediatrics  2014;14:161.
Over recent decades, the prevalence of pediatric obesity has increased markedly in developed and developing countries, and the impact of obesity on health throughout the lifespan has led to urgent calls for action. Family-based weight management interventions that emphasize healthy lifestyle changes can lead to modest improvements in weight status of children with obesity. However, these interventions are generally short in duration, reported in the context of randomized controlled trials and there are few reports of outcomes of these treatment approaches in the clinical setting. Answering these questions is critical for improving the care of children with obesity accessing outpatient health services for weight management. In response, the CANadian Pediatric Weight management Registry (CANPWR) was designed with the following three primary aims:
1. Document changes in anthropometric, lifestyle, behavioural, and obesity-related co-morbidities in children enrolled in Canadian pediatric weight management programs over a three-year period;
2. Characterize the individual-, family-, and program-level determinants of change in anthropometric and obesity-related co-morbidities;
3. Examine the individual-, family-, and program-level determinants of program attrition.
This prospective cohort, multi-centre study will include children (2–17 years old; body mass index ≥85th percentile) enrolled in one of eight Canadian pediatric weight management centres. We will recruit 1,600 study participants over a three-year period. Data collection will occur at presentation and 6-, 12-, 24-, and 36-months follow-up. The primary study outcomes are BMI z-score and change in BMI z-score over time. Secondary outcomes include anthropometric (e.g., height, waist circumference,), cardiometabolic (e.g., blood pressure, lipid profile, glycemia), lifestyle (e.g., dietary intake, physical activity, sedentary activity), and psychosocial (e.g., health-related quality of life) variables. Potential determinants of change and program attrition will include individual-, family-, and program-level variables.
This study will enable our interdisciplinary team of clinicians, researchers, and trainees to address foundational issues regarding the management of pediatric obesity in Canada. It will also serve as a harmonized, evidence-based registry and platform for conducting future intervention research, which will ultimately enhance the weight management care provided to children with obesity and their families.
PMCID: PMC4082676  PMID: 24957705
Pediatric; Obesity; Family; Treatment; Canada; Health services
10.  Obesity Reduction and Awareness and Screening of Noncommunicable Diseases through Group Education in Children and Adolescents (ORANGE): Methodology Paper (ORANGE-1) 
Our goal is to estimate the prevalence of obesity, glucose intolerance, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and metabolic syndrome among urban children and adolescents aged 6–19 years and to raise awareness about noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) among school children in Chennai, South India.
The Obesity Reduction and Awareness and Screening of Noncommunicable Diseases through Group Education project plans to reach out to children and adolescents using two approaches: the school and the community approach. The school approach aims to reach out to a representative sample of approximately 20,000 urban school children and adolescents, aged 6–19 years, covering 50 schools from all parts of Chennai. Anthropometric measures will include height, weight, waist, body fat, and blood pressure. Data on demographics, family profile, behavioral aspects, physical activity, and food pattern will be obtained by using a validated questionnaire. Awareness about metabolic NCDs like obesity and diabetes will be increased by educating the children and adolescents about healthy lifestyles. Through the community approach, 2000 children and adolescents from randomly selected residential colonies in Chennai will be screened for obesity, glucose intolerance, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and metabolic syndrome.
Expected Outcomes
Awareness about NCDs will be increased among children and their parents in Chennai. This study will also provide valuable epidemiological data on obesity, glucose intolerance, dyslipidemia, hypertension and metabolic syndrome in children and adolescents in urban India.
PMCID: PMC2956817  PMID: 20920448
awareness; early onset type 2 diabetes; childhood diabetes; metabolic syndrome; noncommunicable diseases; obesity; school
11.  Family-Based Intervention for Controlling Childhood Obesity: An Experience Among Iranian Children 
Treatment of childhood obesity is difficult, and successful management may differ in various areas with different cultural backgrounds. The present study was conducted to assess the effect of lifestyle modification family-based intervention in young Iranian children.
This field trial study was conducted in 2011 among 156 obese children in Tehran, Iran. They were randomly assigned to intervention and control groups. At baseline, anthropometric measurements and biochemical analysis were performed. The second and third phases consisted of training sessions for parents of the intervention group. At the fourth phase, there was no training program. In all four phases, questionnaires on demographic characteristics, lifestyle and food frequency were completed by interviewing with mothers, and biochemical analysis was repeated at the end of the study.
During the second and third phases of the study, weight and height increased significantly in both groups, although weight increased more slowly, and waist and hip circumferences was decreased in the intervention group. Serum triglycerides and cholesterol decreased significantly in the intervention group (P < 0.05). Analysis of food group consumption showed that in the intervention group, not only consumption of milk, dairy and nuts group increased significantly but also the corresponding figure decreased for bread and cereals, sugar and confectionery ingredients; moreover, the family's oil and fat consumption decreased significantly (P < 0.05). Watching TV and playing on the computer decreased significantly in the intervention group; however, walking time increased significantly in both groups (P < 0.05).
The family-based lifestyle program had limited but desirable effects on anthropometric and metabolic outcomes of the obese children. We suggest that a longer period of intervention may have more favorable results.
PMCID: PMC3634176  PMID: 23626894
Children; family-based intervention; obesity
12.  Differences in lifestyle behaviors, dietary habits, and familial factors among normal-weight, overweight, and obese Chinese children and adolescents 
Pediatric obesity has become a global public health problem. Data on the lifestyle behaviors, dietary habits, and familial factors of overweight and obese children and adolescents are limited. The present study aims to compare health-related factors among normal-weight, overweight, and obese Chinese children and adolescents.
We conducted a cross-sectional study consisted of 4262 children and adolescents aged 5–18 years old from rural areas of the northeast China. Anthropometric measurements and self-reported information on health-related variables, such as physical activities, sleep duration, dietary habits, family income, and recognition of weight status from the views of both children and parents, were collected by trained personnel.
The prevalence rates of overweight and obesity were 15.3 and 6.4%, respectively. Compared to girls, boys were more commonly overweight (17.5% vs. 12.9%) and obese (9.5% vs. 3.1%). Approximately half of the parents with an overweight or obese child reported that they failed to recognize their child’s excess weight status, and 65% of patients with an overweight child reported that they would not take measures to decrease their child’s body weight. Obese children and adolescents were more likely to be nonsnackers [odds ratio (OR): 1.348; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.039–1.748] and to have a family income of 2000 CNY or more per month (OR: 1.442; 95% CI: 1.045–1.99) and less likely to sleep longer (≥7.5 h) (OR: 0.475; 95% CI: 0.31–0.728) than the normal-weight participants.
Our study revealed a high prevalence of overweight and obesity in a large Chinese pediatric population. Differences in sleep duration, snacking, family income, and parental recognition of children’s weight status among participants in different weight categories were observed, which should be considered when planning prevention and treatment programs for pediatric obesity.
PMCID: PMC3522535  PMID: 23031205
Overweight; Obesity; Children; Adolescents; Health-related factors
13.  Power-Up: A Collaborative After-School Program to Prevent Obesity in African American Children 
Schools represent a key potential venue for addressing childhood obesity.
To assess the feasibility of Power-Up, an after-school program to decrease obesity risk among African American children, using community-based participatory research (CBPR) principles.
Teachers led 14 weekly nutrition and physical activity sessions during after-school care at the Woodlawn Community School on Chicago’s South Side. Forty African American children ages 5 to 12 participated; their 28 parents discussed similar topics weekly at pickup time, and families practiced relevant skills at home. Pre- and post-intervention anthropometrics, blood pressure, dietary measures, and health knowledge and beliefs for children and parents were compared in univariate analysis.
At baseline, 26% of children were overweight; 28% were obese. Post-intervention, mean body mass index (BMI) z scores decreased from 1.05 to 0.81 (p < .0001). Changes were more pronounced for overweight (−0.206 z-score units) than for obese children (−0.062 z-score units; p = .01). Girls decreased their combined prevalence of overweight/obesity from 52% to 46%; prevalence across these categories did not change for boys. The prevalence of healthful attitudes rose, including plans to “eat more foods that are good for you” (77% to 90%; p = .027) and “planning to try some new sports” (80% to 88%; p = .007).
Children in the Power-Up program reduced mean BMI z scores significantly. The after-school venue proved feasible. The use of CBPR principles helped to integrate Power-Up into school activities and contributed to likelihood of sustainability. Engaging parents effectively in the after-school time frame proved challenging; additional strate gies to engage parents are under development. Plans are underway to evaluate this intervention through a randomized study.
PMCID: PMC3601906  PMID: 22616204
After-school; childhood obesity; community-based participatory research; African American; nutrition; physical activity
14.  Obesity and metabolic syndrome in 7-9 years-old Portuguese schoolchildren 
Body fat is related to changes in lipid profile, blood pressure and metabolism of insulin and glucose, known as the metabolic syndrome (MS). The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MS) and its components among overweight and obese Portuguese schoolchildren, and to identify associated clinical and biochemical characteristics.
A total of 82 children (14 overweight and 68 obese; 40 boys and 42 girls) aged 7-9 years, underwent anthropometric measurements. A blood sample was obtained to assess biochemical parameters. Insulin resistance (IR) was determined by the Homeostasis Model Assessment of Insulin Resistance (HOMA-IR). MS was defined by the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III criteria modified by Cook.
The prevalence of MS was 15.8%. Abdominal obesity was present in all children. Frequency of elevated blood pressure, low HDL-cholesterol and elevated triglyceride concentrations were 62.6%, 13.4% and 11.0%, respectively. None of the children presented impaired fasting glucose, however hyperinsulinemia (7.3%) and IR (8.5%) were observed. The number of components of MS was higher in children with higher z-BMI (ρ = 0.411; p < 0.001). MS was associated with higher leptin concentrations. No association was found with adiponectin or ghrelin levels. Leptin correlated positively with obesity, glucose metabolism, lipid profile, hepatic function and C-reactive protein, and negatively with HDL and Apolipoprotein A-I/B ratio.
This study shows a significant prevalence of MS among obese schoolchildren. Abdominal obesity and elevated blood pressure were the most frequent components of this syndrome. Dyslipidemia, IR and high levels of leptin were also associated with MS in this young group.
PMCID: PMC2901245  PMID: 20537155
15.  The additive and interactive effects of parenting style and temperament in obese youth seeking treatment 
To examine maternal parenting behaviors, child temperament and their potential interactions in families of obese children and demographically similar families of nonoverweight children.
A total of 77 obese youth (M body mass index (BMI) z-score values, zBMI = 2.4; ages 8–16, 59% female, 50% African American) and their parents were recruited from a pediatric weight management clinic and compared to 69 families of nonoverweight youth (M zBMI = − 0.03). Comparison youth were classmates of each obese participant matched on gender, race and age.
Maternal report of child temperament, parenting style and anthropometric assessments were obtained.
Compared to nonoverweight youth, mothers of obese youth described their child as having a more difficult temperament and their parenting style as lower in behavioral control. A logistic regression model indicated that difficult temperament, lower behavioral control and the interaction of low maternal warmth and difficult child temperament were associated with increased odds of a child being classified as obese.
Treatment-seeking obese youth and their parents are characterized by different parent and child factors when compared to nonoverweight comparison families. These findings direct investigators to test more complex models of the relation between parent and child characteristics and their mutual role in the weight-related behavior change process.
PMCID: PMC3541051  PMID: 18698318
psychosocial; family; children; adolescence
16.  The Impact of an Intervention Taught by Trained Teachers on Childhood Overweight 
The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of a six-months’ nutrition program, delivered and taught by classroom teachers with in-service nutrition training, on the prevention of overweight and obesity among children in grades 1 to 4. In this randomized trial, four hundred and sixty four children from seven elementary schools were allocated to a nutrition educational program delivered by their own teachers. Intervened teachers had 12 sessions of three hours each with the researchers throughout six months, according to the topics nutrition and healthy eating, the importance of drinking water and healthy cooking activities. After each session, teachers were encouraged to develop activities in class focused on the learned topics. Sociodemographic, anthropometric, dietary, and physical activity assessments were performed at baseline and at the end of the intervention. In the intervention group the increase in Body Mass Index (BMI) z-score was significantly lower than in the control group (p = 0.009); fewer proportion of children became overweight in the intervened group compared with the control (5.6% vs. 18.4%; p = 0.037). Our study provides further support to decrease the overweight epidemic, involving classroom teachers in a training program and making them dedicated interventionists.
PMCID: PMC3366616  PMID: 22690198
BMI z-score; children; obesity; overweight; trained teachers; health promotion
17.  Feasibility and impact of Creciendo Sanos, a clinic-based pilot intervention to prevent obesity among preschool children in Mexico City 
BMC Pediatrics  2014;14:77.
Mexico has the highest adult overweight and obesity prevalence in the Americas; 23.8% of children <5 years old are at risk for overweight and 9.7% are already overweight or obese. Creciendo Sanos was a pilot intervention to prevent obesity among preschoolers in Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMSS) clinics.
We randomized 4 IMSS primary care clinics to either 6 weekly educational sessions promoting healthful nutrition and physical activity or usual care. We recruited 306 parent-child pairs: 168 intervention, 138 usual care. Children were 2-5 years old with WHO body mass index (BMI) z-score 0-3. We measured children’s height and weight and parents reported children’s diet and physical activity at baseline and 3 and 6-month follow-up. We analyzed behavioral and BMI outcomes with generalized mixed models incorporating multiple imputation for missing values.
93 (55%) intervention and 96 (70%) usual care families completed 3 and 6-month follow-up. At 3 months, intervention v. usual care children increased vegetables by 6.3 servings/week (95% CI, 1.8, 10.8). In stratified analyses, intervention participants with high program adherence (5-6 sessions) decreased snacks and screen time and increased vegetables v. usual care. No further effects on behavioral outcomes or BMI were observed. Transportation time and expenses were barriers to adherence. 90% of parents who completed the post-intervention survey were satisfied with the program.
Although satisfaction was high among participants, barriers to participation and retention included transportation cost and time. In intention to treat analyses, we found intervention effects on vegetable intake, but not other behaviors or BMI.
Trial registration NCT01539070.
Comisión Nacional de Investigación Científica del IMSS: 2009-785-120.
PMCID: PMC3999907  PMID: 24649831
Obesity prevention; Intervention; Trial; Pediatrics; Primary care; Mexico; Preschool
The aim of this study was to determine the most frequent skin disorders in obese female schoolchildren in primary and intermediate schools in the Al-Khobar area, Eastern Saudi Arabia.
This was a cross-sectional study conducted in the Al-Khobar area. It involved 2239 female schoolchildren randomly selected from 30 regular public and private primary and preparatory schools. A multi-stage stratified random sampling technique with proportional allocation was used. Data was collected using clinical examination and anthropometric measurements.
The skin diseases that were most common in obese schoolchildren were: dandruff, acne, xerosis, acanthosis nigricans, folliculitis, alopecia, stria distensae (stretch marks) and callosity.
Conclusions and recommendations:
obesity is associated with specific skin disorders. Health education programs on skin diseases and obesity should be provided to all schoolchildren, their families and teachers.
PMCID: PMC3410066  PMID: 23012107
Dermatoses; skin disorders; obese schoolchildren; Al-Khobar; Saudi Arabia
19.  Nutritional management of breastfeeding infants for the prevention of common nutrient deficiencies and excesses 
Korean Journal of Pediatrics  2011;54(7):282-286.
Breastfeeding is the best source of nutrition for every infant, and exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months is usually optimal in the common clinical situation. However, inappropriate complementary feeding could lead to a nutrient-deficient status, such as iron deficiency anemia, vitamin D deficiency, and growth faltering. The recent epidemic outbreak of obesity in Korean children emphasizes the need for us to control children's daily sedentary life style and their intakes of high caloric foods in order to prevent obesity. Recent assessment of breastfeeding in Korea has shown that the rate is between 63% and 89%; thus, up-to-dated evidence-based nutritional management of breastfeeding infants to prevent common nutrient deficiencies or excesses should be taught to all clinicians and health care providers.
PMCID: PMC3195792  PMID: 22025920
Breastfeeding; Iron deficiency anemia; Vitamin D deficiency; Complementary feeding; Obesity
20.  Physical Fitness in Children Infected with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus: Associations with Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy 
Obesity, sedentary lifestyles, and antiretroviral therapies may predispose HIV-infected children to poor physical fitness. Estimated peak oxygen consumption (VO2 peak), maximal strength and endurance, and flexibility were measured in HIV-infected and uninfected children. Among HIV-infected children, anthropometric and HIV disease-specific factors were evaluated to determine their association with VO2 peak. Forty-five HIV-infected children (mean age 16.1 years) and 36 uninfected children (mean age 13.5 years) participated in the study. In HIV-infected subjects, median viral load was 980 copies/ml (IQR 200–11,000 copies/ml), CD4% was 28% (IQR 15–35%), and 82% were on highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). Compared to uninfected children, after adjusting for age, sex, race, body fat, and siblingship, HIV-infected children had lower VO2 peak (25.92 vs. 30.90 ml/kg/min, p<0.0001), flexibility (23.71% vs. 46.09%, p=0.0003), and lower-extremity strength-to-weight ratio (0.79 vs. 1.10 kg lifted/kg of body weight, p=0.002). Among the HIV-infected children, a multivariable analysis adjusting for age, sex, race, percent body fat, and viral load showed VO2 peak was 0.30 ml/kg/min lower per unit increase in percent body fat (p<0.0001) and VO2 peak (SE) decreased 29.45 (±1.62), 28.70 (±1.87), and 24.09 (±0.75) ml/kg/min across HAART exposure categories of no exposure, <60, and ≥60 months, respectively (p<0.0001). HIV-infected children had, in general, lower measures of fitness compared to uninfected children. Factors negatively associated with VO2 peak in HIV-infected children include higher body fat and duration of HAART ≥60 months. Future studies that elucidate the understanding of these differences and mechanisms of decreased physical fitness should be pursued.
PMCID: PMC3537323  PMID: 22747252
21.  Intervention in Overweight Children Improves BMI and Physical Activity 
Childhood obesity is a growing epidemic in family medicine with few clinical treatment options. We implemented and evaluated a group office-visit intervention by family physicians emphasizing nutrition and physical activity within a resiliency psychosocial model, for overweight children and their parents.
The intervention lasted for 3 months, with half of the children crossing over to intervention after 6 months on study. Participants included 35 children who met eligibility criteria of being in third through fifth grades and having a body mass index above the 85th percentile. The 3-month twelve-session intervention, “Choices”, included topics on nutrition, physical activity, and resiliency. The sessions were developed for delivery by a family physician, and a nutritionist, who all received training in positive psychology and resilience skills. Main outcome measures were body mass index (BMI) z-scores for age-and-gender, and weight-for-age-and-gender z-scores, as well as qualitative interviews to understand individual and family processes.
The intervention resulted in a significant effect on one primary outcome, BMI z-score (-0.138 per 9 months (p =0.017) and a trend toward significance on the other, weight for age z-score (-0.87 per 9 months (p=0.09). The net shift of activity from the low METS to the high METS had an intervention effect of 2.84 METS (p = 0.037). Families reported lasting changes in behaviors and attitudes.
The innovative approach used in this study demonstrated modest efficacy in reducing BMI z-score, changing physical activity levels, and possibly shifting family dynamics.
PMCID: PMC4010584  PMID: 23471926
intervention for overweight children; sedentary behavior in children; resiliency
22.  Long-term effects of a non-intensive weight program on body mass index and metabolic abnormalities of obese children and adolescents 
Previous studies have demonstrated positive effects of short-term, intensive weight-loss programs in obese children.
We evaluated the long-term effects of a non-intensive weight management program on the BMI, glycemic measures and lipid profiles of obese youth.
Retrospective chart review of 61 obese children followed at our Weight Management Center. During visits, dietary changes and regular physical activity were recommended. Anthropometric and laboratory parameters were evaluated.
At the initial visit, the mean age was 11.1 ± 2.6 years. The follow-up period was 47.3 ± 11.1 months; the number of outpatient visits per year (OV/yr) was 2.9 ± 0.9. At the end of the follow-up, the whole group exhibited decreased BMI z-score and LDL-cholesterol when compared to the initial visit. In the subset of subjects in whom OGTT was performed, 2-hour glucose and peak insulin were decreased. Compared to children with ≤ 2 OV/year, those with > 2 OV/year (3.19 ± 0.7) exhibited a significant decrease in their BMI z-score, LDL-cholesterol, 2-hour glucose, and peak insulin.
Our study suggests that a periodical (~ 3 OV/yr) evaluation in a non-intensive, long-term weight management program may significantly improve the degree of obesity and cardiovascular risk factors in childhood.
PMCID: PMC3583120  PMID: 22682162
Obesity; Weight loss; Dyslipidemia; Impaired glucose tolerance; Insulin resistance
23.  Correlates of objectively measured overweight/obesity and physical activity in Kenyan school children: results from ISCOLE-Kenya 
BMC Public Health  2014;14:436.
Childhood overweight/obesity and inadequate physical activity burden Western countries, and now, pose a growing threat to the health of children in low and middle income countries. Behavioural transitions toward more sedentary lifestyles coupled with increased consumption of high calorie foods has resulted in rising proportions of overweight/obesity and decreasing levels of physical activity in school-aged children. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence and to investigate factors associated with overweight/obesity and physical activity in Kenyan children aged 9 to 11 years.
Body composition and physical activity measures of participating children were accomplished by anthropometric assessment, accelerometry, and administration of questionnaires related to diet and lifestyle, and the school and neighbourhood environments. Data collection was conducted in the city of Nairobi as part of a larger International Study of Childhood Obesity, Lifestyle and Environment.
A total of 563 participants (46.5% boys, 53.5% girls) were included in the analyses. Of these, 3.7% were underweight, 14.4% were overweight, and 6.4% were obese based on WHO cut-points. Mean daily sedentary time was 398 minutes, time spent in light physical activity was 463 minutes, and time spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity was 36 minutes based on activity cut-points developed by Treuth et al. Only 12.6% of participating children were meeting the recommendation of ≥ 60 minutes of daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, and 45.7% of participants used active transportation to/from school. Increasing parental education level, total annual household income, and attending a private rather than public school were associated positively with being overweight/obese and negatively with meeting physical activity guidelines.
This study provided the evidence for an existing prevalence of childhood overweight/obesity in Nairobi. Children were spending a considerable amount of time in sedentary and light intensity physical activity, with few meeting physical activity guidelines. Higher socioeconomic status and parental education attainment were associated with a higher likelihood of children being overweight/obese and a lower likelihood of children meeting the physical activity recommendations. Interventions and strategies should be attentive to the potential health consequences of lifestyle transitions resulting from urbanisation and economic prosperity.
PMCID: PMC4049435  PMID: 24885924
Overweight; Obesity; Physical activity; School children; Kenya
24.  Fetuin-A levels in obesity: differences in relation to metabolic syndrome and correlation with clinical and laboratory variables 
Fetuin-A is an important player in the enhancement of insulin resistance. There are very limited data available concerning the relationships between fetuin-A, weight status and features of the metabolic syndrome (Met S) in obese Egyptian subjects, and especially in children. The aim of the study was to evaluate fetuin-A serum level in subjects with obesity and its possible association with other laboratory and clinical variables.
Material and methods
A total of 140 obese subjects and 50 controls aged 10-40 years were recruited. Demographic, anthropometric and biochemical features were collected according to a standard protocol. Serum fetuin-A levels were measured using ELISA and the modified Third Report of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP-ATP III) criteria were adopted to diagnose Met S.
A higher level of serum fetuin-A was detected in obese subjects. Met S cases were also significantly associated with higher serum fetuin-A. Fetuin-A correlated significantly with BMI (r = 0.437), systolic (r = 0.228) and diastolic blood pressure (r = 0.295), waist circumference (r = 0.332), insulin resistance calculated by the homeostasis model (HOMA-IR) (r = 0.295) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) (r = 0.362).
Fetuin-A levels were higher in adults and children with obesity and Met S. They were related to insulin resistance and to features of the Met S in cross-sectional analyses. Our study demonstrates a novel association between human fetuin-A and the Met S among obese subject. Therefore, fetuin-A might be a new promising link between obesity and its comorbidities.
PMCID: PMC3506238  PMID: 23185191
fetuin A; obesity; metabolic syndrome; insulin resistance
25.  Prevalence of impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance among obese children and adolescents 
Obesity is one of the most important nutritional disorders in the world which has an obvious relationship with the incidence of metabolic diseases. Obesity prevalence has increased among children and adolescents during recent decades, leading to a rise in Type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM II) prevalence in these two age brackets. Hence, the aim of this study was to assess impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance, and gather metabolic findings in obese children and adolescents.
Methods and materials:
We studied 110 obese children and adolescents (body mass index > 95th percentile for age and gender) 4–18 years of age referred to the endocrine clinic of the Children’s Hospital at Tabriz University in a descriptive cross-sectional study. Fasting glucose, insulin, and lipid profile in all subjects were determined. Oral glucose tolerance test after eating 75 g/kg glucose was performed. Homeostatic model assessment was used to estimate insulin resistance.
Impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance prevalence in 68 obese adolescents was 14.7% and 31.8%, respectively. Impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance was not seen in 23.8% of 42 obese children. No case of DM II was seen. There was a significant statistical difference in glucose (P = 0.003) and insulin (P < 0.001) level at minute 120 in individuals with impaired glucose tolerance compared to obese children and adolescents without impaired glucose tolerance. Rate of insulin resistance in patients with impaired glucose tolerance was greater and had a significant statistical difference (P = 0.03).
Obesity has a close relationship with increased risk of impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance in children and adolescents. Oral glucose tolerance test, unlike fasting glucose test, is a benefit test to predict impaired glucose tolerance. With prompt identification and treatment of obese children with impaired glucose tolerance, we can prevent it from progression towards DM II.
PMCID: PMC2909500  PMID: 20668716
impaired glucose tolerance; insulin resistance; obesity

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