The secular trend in the prevalence of overweight and obesity in the population of primary school children from Ljubljana (Slovenia)

Open access

Abstract

Background: The prevalence of overweight and obesity among children has increased dramatically in recent decades. The survey examined overweight and obesity in the population of boys and girls from Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, aged seven through fourteen from 1991 to 2011.

Methods: An annually repeated cross-sectional study of data from the national SLOFIT monitoring system was used. The body mass index cut-off points of the International Obesity Task Force were used to identify the prevalence of overweight and obesity. Multinomial logistic regression was used for modelling the probability of overweight and obesity as a function of time (year of measurement), sex and age of subjects.

Results: In 1991-2011 period, the odds for overweight and obesity among primary school children (n = 376,719) increased every year by 1.7% (95% CI: 1.6-1.9) and 3.7% (3.4-4%) respectively. Boys have 1.17 (95% CI: 1.15-1.20) times higher odds of becoming overweight and 1.39 (95% CI: 1.35-1.44) times higher odds of becoming obese than girls. In comparison to the reference group (age of 14), the highest odds for overweight were found at the ages of nine and ten (1.39; 95% CI: 1.34-1.44), while for the obesity the highest odds were at the age of eight (2.01; 95% CI: 1.86-2.16).

Conclusion: From 1991 to 2011, overweight and obesity clearly became more prevalent in children from Ljubljana. This trend has been more obvious among boys than girls. In comparison to 14-year-old boys and girls, the highest odds for excessive weight were found below the age of 10.

1. Ferreira I, van der Horst K, Wendel-Vos W, Kremers S, van Lenthe FJ, Brug J. Environmental correlates of physical activity in youth: a review and update. Obes Rev 2007; 8: 129-54.

2. Hills AP, Andersen LB, Byrne NM. Physical activity and obesity in children. Br J Sports Med 2011; 45: 866-70.

3. Steinbeck KS. The importance of physical activity in the prevention of overweight and obesity in childhood: a review and an opinion. Obes Rev 2001; 2: 117-30.

4. Ogden CL, Carroll MD, Kit BK, Flegal KM. Prevalence of obesity and trends in body mass index among US children and adolescents, 1999-2010. JAMA 2012; 307: 483-90.

5. Wang Y, Lobstein T. Worldwide trends in childhood overweight and obesity. Int J Pediatr Obes 2006; 1: 11-25.

6. Wijnhoven TM, van Raaij JM, Spinelli A, Rito AI, Hovengen R, Kunesova M et al. WHO European Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative 2008: weight, height and body mass index in 6-9-year-old children. Pediatr Obes 2013; 8: 79-97.

7. Dehghan M, Akhtar-Danesh N, Merchant AT. Childhood obesity, prevalence and prevention. Nutr J 2005; 4: 24.

8. Stamatakis E, Primatesta P, Chinn S, Rona R, Falascheti E.Overweight and obesity trends from 1974 to 2003 in English children: what is the role of socioeconomic factors? Arch Dis Child 2005; 90: 999-1004.

9. Mokdad AH, Ford ES, Bowman BA, Dietz WH, Vinicor F, Bales VS et al. Prevalence of obesity, diabetes, and obesity-related health risk factors, 2001. JAMA 2003; 289: 76-9.

10. Reilly JJ. Descriptive epidemiology and health consequences of childhood obesity. Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab 2005; 19: 327-41.

11. Lobstein T, Baur L, Uauy R. Obesity in children and young people: a crisis in public health. Obes Rev 2004; 5(Suppl 1): 4-104.

12. Storch EA, Milsom VA, Debraganza N, Lewin AB, Geffken GR, Silverstein JH. Peer victimization, psychosocial adjustment, and physical activity in overweight and at-risk-for-overweight youth.J Pediatr Psychol 2007; 32: 80-9.

13. Starc G, Strel J. Is there a rationale for establishing Slovenian body mass index references of school-aged children and adolescents? Anthrop Notebooks 2011; 17: 89-100.

14. Haug E, Rasmussen M, Samdal O, Iannotti R, Kelly C, Borraccino A et al. Overweight in school-aged children and its relationship with demographic and lifestyle factors: results from the WHO-Collaborative Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study. Int J Public Health 2009; 54(Suppl 2): 167-79.

15. Yngve A, De Bourdeaudhuij I, Wolf A, Grjibovski A, Brug J, Due P et al. Differences in prevalence of overweight and stunting in 11-year olds across Europe: The Pro Children Study. Eur J Public Health 2008; 18: 126-30.

16. Currie C, Zanotti C, Morgan A, Currie D, de Looze M, Roberts C et al. Social determinants of health and well-being among young people. Health behaviour in school-aged children (HBSC) study: international report from the 2009/2010 survey. Copenhagen: WHO Regional Office for Europe, 2012.

17. Peckham CS, Stark O, Simonite V, Wolff OH. Prevalence of obesity in British children born in 1946 and 1958. Br Med J 1983; 286: 1237-42.

18. Whelton H, Harrington J, Crowley E, Kelleher V, Cronin M, Perry IJ. Prevalence of overweight and obesity on the island of Ireland: results from the North South Survey of Children‘s Height, Weight and Body Mass Index, 2002. BMC Public Health 2007; 7: 187.

19. Moreno L, Sarria A, Fleta J, Rodriguez G, Bueno M. Trends in obesity among children in Aragon (Spain) 1985 to 1995. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1998; 19: S7.

20. Holmback U, Fridman J, Gustafsson J, Proos L, Sundelin C, Forslund A. Overweight more prevalent among children than among adolescents. Acta Paediatr 2007; 96: 577-81.

21. Yuca SA, Yilmaz C, Cesur Y, Dogan M, Kaya A, Basaranoglu M. Prevalence of overweight and obesity in children and adolescents in eastern Turkey. J Clin Res Pediatr Endocrinol 2010; 2: 159-63.

22. Elmadfa I, Godina-Zarfl B, König J, Dichtl M, Faist V. Prevalence of overweight and plasma lipids in 7-18 year old Austrian children and adolescents. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1993; 17: S35.

23. Maffeis C, Schutz Y, Piccoli R, Gonfiantini E, Pinelli L. Prevalence of obesity in children in north-east Italy. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1993; 17: 287-94.

24. Vuorela N, Saha MT, Salo MK. Change in prevalence of overweight and obesity in Finnish children: comparison between 1974 and 2001. Acta Paediatr 2011; 100: 109-15.

25. Sweeting HN. Gendered dimensions of obesity in childhood and adolescence. Nutr J 2008; 7: 1.

26. Leskošek B, Strel J, Kovač M. Overweight and obesity in Slovenian schoolgirls, 1991-2006. Coll Antropol 2010; 34: 1303-8.

27. Starc G, Strel J. Tracking excess weight and obesity from childhood to young adulthood: a 12-year prospective cohort study in Slovenia. Public Health Nutr 2011; 14: 49-55.

28. Planinšec J, Fošnarič S. Body mass index and triceps skinfold thickness in prepubertal children in Slovenia. Coll Antropol 2009; 33: 341-5.

29. Avbelj M, Saje-Hribar N, Seher-Zupančič M, Brcar P, Kotnik P, Iršič A et al. Overweight and obesity prevalence among 5-yearold children and 15- to 16-year-old adolescents in Slovenia.Zdrav Vestn 2005; 74: 753-9.

30. Kovač M, Jurak G, Leskošek B. The prevalence of excess weight and obesity in Slovenian children and adolescents from 1991 to 2011. Anthrop Notebooks 2012; 18: 91-103.

31. Dietz WH. Health consequences of obesity in youth: childhood predictors of adult disease. Pediatrics 1998; 101: 518-25.

32. Singh AS, Mulder C, Twisk JW, van Mechelen W, Chinapaw MJ.Tracking of childhood overweight into adulthood: a systematic review of the literature. Obes Rev 2008; 9: 474-88.

33. Slovene Municipalities in Numbers. Statistical Office of Republic of Slovenia. Available May 5, 2013 at: http://www.stat.si/ObcineVStevilkah/Vsebina.aspx?leto=2011&id=82&lang=eng.

34. Strel J, Ambrožič F, Kondrič M, Kovač M, Leskošek B, Štihec J et al. Sports Educational Chart. Ljubljana: Ministry of Education and Sport, 1997.

35. Cole TJ, Bellizzi MC, Flegal KM, Dietz WH. Establishing a standard definition for child overweight and obesity worldwide: international survey. BMJ 2000; 320: 1240-3.

36. Collett D. Modelling binary data. London: Chapman and Hall, 1991.

37. Pušnik M, Starc G. An entertaining (r)evolution: the rise of television in socialist Slovenia. Media Cult Soc 2008; 30: 777-93.

38. Kobe H, Štimec M, Ribič CH, Fidler Mis N. Food intake in Slovenian adolescents and adherence to the Optimized Mixed Diet: a nationally representative study. Public Health Nutr 2012; 15: 600-8.

39. Jurak G. Sporting lifestyle vs. ‘cigarettes & coffee’ lifestyle of Slovenian high school students. Anthrop Notebooks 2006; 12: 79-95.

40. Strel J, Kovač M, Jurak G. Physical and motor development, sport activities and lifestyles of Slovenian children and youth: changes in the last few decades In: Brettschneider WD, Naul R, editors. Obesity in Europe: young people’s physical activity and sedentary lifestyles. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2007: 243-64.

41. Starc G, Strel J, Kovač M. Telesni in gibalni razvoj slovenskih otrok in mladine v številkah. Šolsko leto 2007/08. Ljubljana: Faculty of Sport, 2010.

42. Brener ND, McManus T, Galuska DA, Lowry R, Wechsler H. Reliability and validity of self-reported height and weight among high school students. J Adolesc Health 2003; 32: 281-7.

43. Ferreira RJ, Marques-Vidal PM. Prevalence and determinants of obesity in children in public schools of Sintra, Portugal. Obesity (Silver Spring) 2008; 16: 497-500.

44. Sjoberg A, Lissner L, Albertsson-Wikland K, Marild S. Recent anthropometric trends among Swedish school children: evidence for decreasing prevalence of overweight in girls. Acta Paediatr 2008; 97: 118-23.

45. Yearly sport program of the Municipality of Ljubljana. Available Mar 15, 2013 at: www.ljubljana.si/si/mol/mestna-uprava/oddelki/sport/.

46. Stamatakis E, Wardle J, Cole TJ. Childhood obesity and overweight prevalence trends in England: evidence for growing socioeconomic disparities. Int J Obes 2010; 34: 41-7.

47. Cattaneo A, Monasta L, Stamatakis E, Lioret S, Castetbon K, Frenken F et al. Overweight and obesity in infants and preschool children in the European Union: a review of existing data. Obes Rev 2010; 11: 389-98.

48. Eriksson M, Rasmussen F, Nordqvist T. Changes in shape and location of BMI distributions of Swedish children. Acta Paediatr 2005; 94: 1558-65.

49. Daniels SR, Khoury PR, Morrison JA. The utility of body mass index as a measure of body fatness in children and adolescents: differences by race and gender. Pediatrics 1997; 99: 804-7.

50. Shephard RJ. The obesity epidemic: a challenge to pediatric work physiologists. Pediatric Exercise Sci 2005; 17: 3-17.

51. Rolland-Cachera MF, Cole TJ, Sempe M, Tichet J, Rossignol C, Charraud A. Body Mass Index variations: centiles from birth to 87 years. Eur J Clin Nutr 1991; 45: 13-21.

52. Krieger N. Genders, sexes, and health: what are the connectionsand why does it matter? Int J Epidemiol 2003; 32: 652-7.

53. Škerlj B. Splošna antropologija v osnovnih potezah. Ljubljana: Državna založba Slovenije, 1948.

54. Whitaker RC, Wright JA, Pepe MS, Seidel KD, Dietz WH. Predicting obesity in young adulthood from childhood and parental obesity. N Engl J Med 1997; 337: 869-73.

55. Artnik B, Bajt M, Bilban M, Borovničar A, Brguljan J, Djomba JK et al. Zdravje in vedenjski slog prebivalcev Slovenije: trendi v raziskavah CINDI 2001-2004-2008. Ljubljana: Inštitut za varovanje zdravja Republike Slovenije, 2012.

56. Jurak G, Kovač M, Strel J. Influence of the enhanced physical education curriculum on the physical fitness of children. Croat J Edu 2012; 13: 41-70.

57. Starc G, Strel J. Influence of the quality implementation of a physical education curriculum on the physical development and physical fitness of children. BMC Public Health 2012; 12: 61.

Slovenian Journal of Public Health

The Journal of National Institute of Public Health

Journal Information

IMPACT FACTOR 2017: 0.620
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 0.488



CiteScore 2017: 0.33

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.147
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.429

Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 439 439 41
PDF Downloads 168 168 12