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J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2001;14 Suppl 5:1327-33; discussion 1365.

Determinants of body mass index in Greek children and adolescents.

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  • 1Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Panagia Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece.


The aim of this study was to investigate the determinants of body mass index (BMI) among Greek children and adolescents, such as parental age and BMI, number of family members in the household, parents' educational status and occupation, physical activity and hours of television viewing and playing computer games by children per day. This cross-sectional study included 2,495 children aged 6-17 years from primary and high schools of Thessaloniki, capital of Northern Greece. Data were collected by questionnaires concerning age, height and weight of the parents, number of family members, and socioeconomic status as determined by occupation and educational status of the parents. Our results revealed that overweight in Greek children and adolescents is influenced positively by several determinant factors, such as parental age and obesity, hours of television viewing, and negatively by a high parental educational level. No significant association was found between children's BMI and physical activity. Intervention and prevention measures should be targeted at the reduction of sedentary activities, especially television viewing, and promotion of physical activity. These measures should be directed at families that are affected and/or concerned with obesity.

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