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Ann Nutr Metab. 1997;41(5):307-14.

Temporal changes in body mass index and prevalence of obesity among Kuwaiti men.

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Department of Community Medicine and Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kuwait, Safat, Kuwait.


The purpose of this study was to compare temporal changes in BMI (kg/m2) and obesity among adult (aged > or = 18 years) Kuwaiti men using 2 independent cross-sectional samples of 896 and 1,730 subjects, studied for nutritional assessment and for prevalence of obesity in 1980-81 and 1993-94, respectively. The samples were drawn from primary health care (PHC) clinics and measured for body mass index (BMI), and obesity, defined as BMI > 25 (grade 1) and > 30 (grade 2) kg/m2. The results of the study showed that mean BMI (kg/m2) and prevalence of grade 1 and 2 obesity (BMI > 25 and > 30 kg/m2) increased by 10 (2.5 kg/m2), 20.6 and 15.4%, respectively. After controlling for sociodemographic differences between the two study periods, mean BMI was 2 kg/m2 higher in 1993-94 than in 1980-81 and prevalence of obesity (BMI > 25 and > 30 kg/m2) also increased between the two periods (OR = 2.1, 95% CI 1.7-2.7 and OR = 1.9, 95% CI 1.5-2.4, respectively). In conclusion, BMI and prevalence of obesity increased among Kuwaiti men between 1980-81 and 1993-94, due to modernization, affluence and the concomitant changes to sedentary lifestyles. The rates of temporal changes in BMI and in prevalence of obesity were higher in Kuwait than in selected other countries.

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