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Acta Paediatr. 2016 Feb;105(2):200-5. doi: 10.1111/apa.13143. Epub 2015 Sep 23.

Overweight and obesity decreased in Greek schoolchildren from 2009 to 2012 during the early phase of the economic crisis.

Author information

1
Third Department of Pediatrics, University of Athens School of Medicine, 'Attikon' University Hospital, Athens, Greece.

Abstract

AIM:

We examined the weight status of Greek schoolchildren from November 2009 to May 2012, shortly before, and during the early years, of the Greek economic crisis.

METHODS:

This was a mixed longitudinal study that formed part of the West Attica Growth Study and followed children at the ages of 6-7, 9-10, 12-13 and 15-16 years every six months for 2.5 years. Each child's height and weight were measured and their body mass index calculated. We were able to determine the weight status of 1327 children (53% boys) based on their first and last measurements. Overweight, obesity and underweight were defined using the International Obesity Task Force criteria.

RESULTS:

During the 2.5-year study period, there was a decrease in the total prevalence of overweight and obesity, which reached a statistical significance for both sexes. It decreased from 43% to 37.3% (p = 0.02) in boys and from 33.4% to 26.9% (p = 0.0056) in girls. There was also a statistically significant increase in normal weight children and a slight but insignificant increase in underweight children of both sexes.

CONCLUSION:

During the initial years of the Greek economic crisis, there was a statistically significant reduction in overweight and obesity in children from six to 16 years of age.

KEYWORDS:

Greek economic crisis; Obesity; Overweight; Schoolchildren; Underweight

PMID:
26280808
DOI:
10.1111/apa.13143
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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