ROLE OF HEREDITY AND LIFESTYLE IN THE PREVALENCE OF OBESITY AMONG SCHOOL STUDENTS IN SAHIWAL CITY
Background: Obesity results from the energy imbalance that occurs when a person consumes more calories than their body burns.
Objectives: This study was conducting to identify different factors involved in childhood obesity and to explore the relationship between parents’ obesity and childhood obesity.
Methodology: This was a descriptive cross sectional institutional based study. Primary school children of age group 10-14 years old children who were attending schools during the study period and whose parent agreed to participate in the research were selected to participate in this study. Measurement of weight in kilograms by using portable scale which was standardized to zero daily. Children were weighed barefoot, wearing light clothes. Measurements were rounded to the nearest 1 kg. Height was measured of the children with barefoot, by using measuring tape. Measurements were rounded to the nearest 0.5 cm. Calculation of BMI was by using this formula BMI = weight in Kgs/ height (meters)2, other than that, data was collected from the parents through questionnaire to identify family history and other risk factors associated with obesity.
Results: There are 150 school children with a mean age 15.23 (SD=0/81) of years. Calculated average BMI indicated normal weight 22.60 (SD=1.06), overweight 27.27 (SD=2.32), and obesity 35.98 (SD=1.71). There were 41 (27.3%) children who were involved in physical activity; 24 (16%) were playing different sports daily; 18 (12%) were taking part in physical activity thrice a week; and 108 (72%) never took part in any type of physical activity. There were 39 (26%) who reported playing sports for 30 minutes a day; 2 (1.3%) were spending 40 minutes a day and 108 (72%) never took part in any type of sports. Only 41 (27.3%) were involved in moderate level of activity. There were 93 (62%) school children who were living an inactive lifestyle by spending time to watch TV, playing video games, and spending time on social networking sites and 112 (97.3%) were eating junk food on daily basis. Their parents were also living an inactive lifestyle and parents’ BMI was higher than the normal as mothers’ average BMI was 32. 10 (SD=5.07) and the fathers’ BMI was also higher than the normal as 35.60 (SD=5.72). There was a significantly positive relationship between children’s’ BMI and their parents BMI.
Conclusion: The results indicated that both hereditary and environmental factors are involved in childhood obesity. Future investigations are needed to find out which factor has a strong impact on childhood obesity.