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Biomed Environ Sci. 2013 Jan;26(1):1-12. doi: 10.3967/0895-3988.2013.01.001.

Empirical changes in the prevalence of overweight and obesity among Chinese students from 1985 to 2010 and corresponding preventive strategies.

Author information

1
Institute of Child and Adolescent Health, School of Public Health, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing 100191, China. jichengye@263.net

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine the extent of the obesity epidemic in school-aged Chinese children in 2010 and track the increasing trend in different socioeconomic regions over the preceding 25 years. Strategies for preventing childhood obesity are suggested.

METHODS:

We used a dataset provided by the Chinese National Survey on Students' Constitution and Health from 1985-2010. Subjects were 7-18-year-old students randomly selected from urban and rural areas in 30 provinces. Eight subgroups were created according to region and socioeconomic status.

RESULTS:

Increased rates of the epidemic (overweight and obesity combined) were greatest in large coastal cities-32.6% and 19.1% among males and females, respectively. These rates has neared that of developed countries. Similar increases were found in all other regions, including the once poverty-stricken rural west. The epidemic in most of the rural areas began after 2000, but has spread swiftly over the last decade. In 2010, it was estimated that 9.9% of Chinese school-aged children and adolescents were overweight and that an additional 5.1% were obese, representing an estimated 30.43 million individuals.

CONCLUSION:

The prognosis for China's childhood-obesity epidemic is dire. To prevent childhood obesity, we suggest several strategies, including reasonable dietary intake, increase physical activity, a change in sedentary lifestyles and corresponding behavioral modifications.

PMID:
23294610
DOI:
10.3967/0895-3988.2013.01.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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