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Revista Brasileira de Cineantropometria & Desempenho Humano

On-line version ISSN 1980-0037


GUEDES, Dartagnan Pinto; MIRANDA NETO, Jaime Tolentino; ALMEIDA, Maria João  and  SILVA, António José Rocha Martins e. Impact of sociodemographic and behavioral factors on the prevalence of overweight and obesity in schoolchildren. Rev. bras. cineantropom. desempenho hum. [online]. 2010, vol.12, n.4, pp.221-231. ISSN 1980-0037.

This study analyzed the impact of sociodemographic and behavioral factors on the prevalence of overweight and obesity in a representative sample of schoolchildren from Montes Claros, Minas Gerais, Brazil. The sample consisted of 2849 children and adolescents (1457 girls and 1392 boys), ranging in age from 6 to 18 years. Overweight and obesity were defined based on body mass index according to the cut-off values for gender and age suggested by the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF). The prevalence rates in the different strata associated with sociodemographic and behavioral factors were compared by logistic regression using adjusted odds ratios. The prevalence of overweight and obesity was 19.7% and 4.8%, respectively, among girls, and 14.7% and 2.8% among boys. The results show that, although the prevalence of overweight and obesity is similar to estimates observed in other Brazilian regions and smaller than those found in more industrialized areas, the proportion of schoolchildren who presented overweight and obesity is a matter of concern. The main sociodemographic and behavioral factors associated with the occurrence of overweight were economic status, educational level of the parents, number of siblings, school menu, distance and means of transportation between home and school, paid work, and leisure-time activity. The data show an urgent need for the implementation of educational intervention programs designed to promote physical activity and adequate dietary habits.

Keywords : Body mass index; IOTF; Risk factors; Children; Adolescents.

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