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Original Article

Prevalence of Obesity and Overweight among Primary School Children in Majmaah, Saudi Arabia

Sawsan M Abdalla, Badria A Alsaif, Shahad J Al Jasser, Afnan S Al Sultan.


Background: Obesity has become an epidemic worldwide. In 2010, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 42 million children under 5 years of age were overweight or obese. In the Eastern Mediterranean Region, the disease reached an alarming level, the prevalence among schoolchildren was 12%–25%. The objective of the current study was to assess obesity and overweight among primary school Students in Majmaah, Saudi Arabia

Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional and community -based study conducted at primary schools in Majmaah, the capital of Majmaah province in Riyadh region, Saudi Arabia. A sample frame included all primary schools in the city. The sample size was calculated as 400. A pre-tested questionnaire was employed to collect data. Height and weight of the children were measured and .body mass index (BMI) was calculated.

Results: Age of respondents ranged from 6-14 years (mean = 10 ± 2.1 years). The prevalence of overweight and obesity among primary school students were 10.1% and 18.9% respectively. The prevalence rate of overweight and obesity among male students were 11.2% and 17.6% respectively. The prevalence rate of overweight and obesity among females was 9.2% and 19.8% respectively. There is no significant association between nutrition status with social factors (age/gender)

Conclusion: Overweight and obesity were high among the school children. Fast food and soft drinks were highly consumed by the .primary school children

Key words: Obesity, Overweight, social factors

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