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Is high-altitude environment a risk factor for childhood overweight and obesity in Saudi Arabia?
Wilderness Environ Med. 2008 Fall; 19(3):157-63.WE

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To describe the prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity in rural high- and low-altitude populations of southwestern Saudi Arabia and to identify specific at-risk groups within these populations.

METHODS

A cross-sectional study was conducted on 912 school children and adolescents aged 6-15 years born and living permanently at high altitudes (2800-3150 m) and 972 children and adolescents of comparable ages born and living permanently at low altitudes (< or =500 m). Height and weight were measured. For children <10 years, the weight-to-height index according to World Health Organization (WHO) standards was used for assessing overweight and obesity. For adolescents 10-15 years, overweight and obesity were assessed by age and gender-specific percentiles for body mass index based on the WHO/National Centre for Health Statistics reference population. A questionnaire was used for measuring parents' socioeconomic status.

RESULTS

The overall prevalence of overweight and obesity at high and low altitudes was 10%. The study showed that some school children and adolescents were at a significantly higher risk of developing overweight and obesity. Significant risk factors included moderate-to-high parental income, age > or =10 years, high-altitude birth and residence, and female sex (crude odds ratio 3.2 [95% CI, 1.8- 5.5], 2.3 [95% CI, 1.6-3.2], 2.1 [95% CI, 1.5-2.9], and 1.9 [95% CI, 1.4-2.6], respectively). A multivariate analysis using the direct binary logistic regression model revealed that moderate-to-high parental income, age > or =10 years, female sex, and high-altitude birth and residence were significant independent predictors of childhood overweight and obesity. (adjusted OR 3.2 [95% CI, 1.6-2.6], 2.6 [95% CI, 1.8-3.8], 2.0 [95% CI, 1.6-2.9], and 1.8 [95% CI, 1.3-2.6]), respectively.

CONCLUSION

The present study identified risk factors for childhood overweight and obesity in Saudi Arabia. Among these, high altitude was a significant and independent factor. Future research is warranted to evaluate the exact mechanism by which a high-altitude environment may contribute to childhood overweight and obesity.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Physiology, College of Medicine, King Khalid University, Abha, Saudi Arabia. mhkhalid999@yahoo.com

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

18715124

Citation

Khalid, Mohammed El-Habib. "Is High-altitude Environment a Risk Factor for Childhood Overweight and Obesity in Saudi Arabia?" Wilderness & Environmental Medicine, vol. 19, no. 3, 2008, pp. 157-63.
Khalid Mel-H. Is high-altitude environment a risk factor for childhood overweight and obesity in Saudi Arabia? Wilderness Environ Med. 2008;19(3):157-63.
Khalid, M. e. l. -. H. (2008). Is high-altitude environment a risk factor for childhood overweight and obesity in Saudi Arabia? Wilderness & Environmental Medicine, 19(3), 157-63. https://doi.org/10.1580/07-WEME-OR-095.1
Khalid Mel-H. Is High-altitude Environment a Risk Factor for Childhood Overweight and Obesity in Saudi Arabia. Wilderness Environ Med. 2008;19(3):157-63. PubMed PMID: 18715124.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Is high-altitude environment a risk factor for childhood overweight and obesity in Saudi Arabia? A1 - Khalid,Mohammed El-Habib, PY - 2008/8/22/pubmed PY - 2008/12/30/medline PY - 2008/8/22/entrez SP - 157 EP - 63 JF - Wilderness & environmental medicine JO - Wilderness Environ Med VL - 19 IS - 3 N2 - OBJECTIVE: To describe the prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity in rural high- and low-altitude populations of southwestern Saudi Arabia and to identify specific at-risk groups within these populations. METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted on 912 school children and adolescents aged 6-15 years born and living permanently at high altitudes (2800-3150 m) and 972 children and adolescents of comparable ages born and living permanently at low altitudes (< or =500 m). Height and weight were measured. For children <10 years, the weight-to-height index according to World Health Organization (WHO) standards was used for assessing overweight and obesity. For adolescents 10-15 years, overweight and obesity were assessed by age and gender-specific percentiles for body mass index based on the WHO/National Centre for Health Statistics reference population. A questionnaire was used for measuring parents' socioeconomic status. RESULTS: The overall prevalence of overweight and obesity at high and low altitudes was 10%. The study showed that some school children and adolescents were at a significantly higher risk of developing overweight and obesity. Significant risk factors included moderate-to-high parental income, age > or =10 years, high-altitude birth and residence, and female sex (crude odds ratio 3.2 [95% CI, 1.8- 5.5], 2.3 [95% CI, 1.6-3.2], 2.1 [95% CI, 1.5-2.9], and 1.9 [95% CI, 1.4-2.6], respectively). A multivariate analysis using the direct binary logistic regression model revealed that moderate-to-high parental income, age > or =10 years, female sex, and high-altitude birth and residence were significant independent predictors of childhood overweight and obesity. (adjusted OR 3.2 [95% CI, 1.6-2.6], 2.6 [95% CI, 1.8-3.8], 2.0 [95% CI, 1.6-2.9], and 1.8 [95% CI, 1.3-2.6]), respectively. CONCLUSION: The present study identified risk factors for childhood overweight and obesity in Saudi Arabia. Among these, high altitude was a significant and independent factor. Future research is warranted to evaluate the exact mechanism by which a high-altitude environment may contribute to childhood overweight and obesity. SN - 1080-6032 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/18715124/Is_high_altitude_environment_a_risk_factor_for_childhood_overweight_and_obesity_in_Saudi_Arabia L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/1080-6032-19-3-157 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -