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Ann Afr Med. 2019 Jan-Mar;18(1):42-46. doi: 10.4103/aam.aam_17_18.

The effect of body mass index and gender on lipid profile in children and adolescents in Saudi Arabia.

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Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Department of Paediatrics, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.


in English, French


The objectives of this study were to study the relationship between lipid profile components among different body mass index (BMI) groups and investigate the association between gender and BMI.


This cross-sectional study included 218 children and adolescents; 104 males and 114 females. Accepted age range was from 2 to 18 years. Data were collected from February to May during the year of 2017 and were analyzed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences. Standard deviation (SD) for BMI was calculated based on the World Health Organization guidelines. Lipid profile results were reviewed from laboratory reports.


Nearly 10.6% of the study population were found to be overweight; another 22.1% were suffering from obesity, of which 7.1% were morbidly obese. Children who had high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and low levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) were found among higher BMI groups, with elevated cholesterol levels noted in patients of increased weight. An increase in HDL levels was noted in 71% of the children who avoided fast-food consumption. Significant gender predisposition to changes in BMI was not found (P = 0.467).


High BMI was found to be associated with increased levels of LDL cholesterol and decreased levels of HDL cholesterol. No significant association between gender and changes in lipid profile was established (P = 0.898).


All pediatricians must keep an open eye on overweight and obese children, routinely taking their weight measurements and screening for dyslipidemia by obtaining a full lipid profile for every child whose weight is 2 SDs above the mean.


Body; children; index; lipid; mass; profile

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