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Revista Paulista de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0103-0582On-line version ISSN 1984-0462

Abstract

VANZELLI, Amanda Somolanji; CASTRO, Camille Tavares de; PINTO, Melina da Silva  and  PASSOS, Saulo Duarte. Prevalence of overweight and obesity among children of public schools in the city of Jundiaí, São Paulo, Brazil. Rev. paul. pediatr. [online]. 2008, vol.26, n.1, pp.48-53. ISSN 0103-0582.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-05822008000100008.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the prevalence of obesity related to gender and socioeconomic level in students of public schools, according to two different nutritional criteria. METHODS: A cross-sectional study was performed in public schools of the city of Jundiaí, São Paulo, Brazil, and included 662 students with 10-18 years old that attended 5th-8th grades, in 2005. The sample was selected using systematic procedure, according to the student’s grade and gender. The body mass index (BMI) was calculated and cutoff points were selected for classification of nutritional state according to two anthropometrics criteria: values of BMI as percentiles and as sharp cutoff point. RESULTS: The prevalence of overweight was 17% using the percentile criteria and 13% with the numerical cutoff. The frequency of obesity was 8 and 9%, respectively for both criteria. Difference between genders was found using the percentile criteria, with higher percentage of leanness in males. Overweight and obesity were more frequent among adolescents of better socioeconomic status. CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of overweight and obesity were higher in students of better economic classes. The BMI percentiles detected a higher number of adolescents with overweight and obesity compared to the numerical cutoff.

Keywords : obesity; overweight; epidemiology; adolescent health.

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