, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 31-37
Date: 21 Nov 2011

Impact of childhood obesity treatment on body composition and metabolic profile

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Childhood obesity is associated with adverse changes in cardiometabolic risk factors. A family-oriented group program stressing a health-promoting lifestyle has been more effective than routine counselling in the treatment of obesity in school children. The aim of the present study was to compare the impact of group program and routine councelling on body composition and metabolic profile, and to evaluate the associations of changes in adiposity with levels of cardiometabolic risk factors.


Seventy obese prepubertal children were randomized into family-oriented group program (15 sessions for parents and children) and routine counselling (2 appointments for children). Body mass index (BMI), body composition and different metabolic risk factors were assessed before and after the 6-month intervention.


Waist/height decreased more in the children attending the group treatment, but there were no significant differences between treatment arms in the changes of metabolic risk factors. When the arms were analyzed as combined, serum triglycerides decreased significantly if BMI standard deviation score (BMI-SDS) decreased ≥0.5. Serum fasting insulin decreased if BMISDS decreased ≥0.25.


Obesity-related metabolic risk factors reduced in prepubertal children if BMI-SDS decreased substantially. This result was not dependent on which intervention, family-oriented group program or routine counselling, was used.