International Journal of Health Sciences and Research

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Original Research Article

Year: 2018 | Month: July | Volume: 8 | Issue: 7 | Pages: 1-8

Risk Factors for Overweight and Obesity among School-Age Children in Jos, Nigeria

Akinyemi O. D Ofakunrin1, Janet I. Obayomi2, Bose O. Toma1, Udochuckwu M. Diala1, Ibrahim I. Abok1, Selina N. Okolo1

1Department of Paediatrics, University of Jos / Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria.
2Department of Paediatrics, Northwick Park Hospital, Watford Road, HA0 3UJ, Harrow, United Kingdom.

Corresponding Author: Akinyemi O. D Ofakunrin


Background: The prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity is increasing not only in the developed nations but also in the low and middle-income countries. Overweight and obesity are associated with untoward health complications thereby necessitating the need for effective preventive strategies which could largely be achieved if the risk factors, which are thought to vary culturally, are known. Hence, this study assessed the risk factors for overweight and obesity among the school-aged children in Jos, North Central, Nigeria.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional study conducted among 600 pupils aged 6-13 years in Jos, Nigeria. Data on socio-demographic characteristics, dietary practices and level of physical activities of the pupils were obtained using pretested questionnaires. Body mass indexes derived from weights and heights measurement were used to assess the prevalence of overweight and obesity. The factors associated with overweight and obesity was determined using multiple logistic regression.
Results: The risk factors that were significantly associated with overweight/obesity included parental upper socio-economic status (OR, 1.74; 95% CI: 1.05-2.23), television viewing of more than two hours per day (OR, 1.82; 95% CI: 1.31–2.33), vehicular transport to school (OR, 1.51; 95% CI: 1.21-3.13) and eating out at fast food joints (OR, 1.54; 95% CI: 1.21–1.87).
Conclusions: This study has identified some modifiable potential risk factors for overweight and obesity among school-age children in Jos. Therefore, interventions targeting some of these factors could help in prevention and control of overweight/obesity among this age group.

Key words: Risk factors, overweight, obesity, children, Nigeria

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