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Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 99, Issue 2, pp 91–94 | Cite as

Using Routine Growth Data to Determine Overweight and Obesity Prevalence Estimates in Preschool Children in the Capital Health Region of Alberta

  • Joy EdwardsEmail author
  • Judy Evans
  • Angela D. Brown
Article
  • 1 Downloads

Abstract

Background

Overweight and obesity prevalence is increasing in Canadian children. In the Capital Health region of Alberta, there is a need to examine this public health issue and implement strategies to overcome it. Two growth references, one provided by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the other by the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF), are available to assess individuals and screen populations for overweight and obesity. The prevalence can vary as a function of the reference used. The primary objective of this study is to determine prevalence estimates of overweight and obesity in 4–6 year olds in the Capital Health region. The secondary objective is to explore differences in estimates using both classification systems.

Methods

Anthropometric measurements were incorporated into regular preschool immunization visits. Body Mass Index (BMI), defined as the bodyweight in kilograms divided by height in metres squared was calculated for each record and percentiles for age and sex were determined using cut-offs from the IOTF and CDC. The prevalence estimates of overweight and obesity using both classification systems were determined and compared.

Results

Out of 7,369 children, 13.8% were overweight and 11.4% were obese according to the CDC reference. The IOTF reference classified 11.5% as overweight and 6.8% as obese. The two reference systems had moderate agreement (kappa 0.69, p<0.01).

Conclusion

The results indicate a lower prevalence estimate of overweight and obesity among young children in the Capital Health region compared to other parts of Canada. The IOTF reference provides more conservative estimates than the CDC reference, accounted for more by the difference in estimates of obesity than by the difference in estimates for overweight.

Key words

Overweight obesity child development Body Mass Index (BMI) child, preschool 

Résumé

Contexte

La prévalence de l’embonpoint et de l’obésité est en hausse chez les enfants canadiens. Dans la région sanitaire d’Edmonton (Alberta), il a été jugé nécessaire d’examiner ce problème de santé publique et de mettre en œuvre des stratégies pour le surmonter. Deux graphiques de croissance sont disponibles pour analyser l’embonpoint et l’obésité individuellement et à l’échelle d’une population: celui des Centers for Disease Control and Prevention des Etats-Unis (CDC) et celui du groupe de travail international sur l’obésité (IOTF). La prévalence peut varier en fonction du graphique utilisé. L’objectif principal de notre étude était de calculer la prévalence estimative de ‘embonpoint et de l’obésité chez les enfants de 4 à 6 ans dans la région sanitaire d’Edmonton. Le deuxième objectif était d’analyser les différences dans les estimations produits par les deux systèmes de classification.

Méthode

Des mesures anthropométriques ont été intégrées dans les visites de vaccination systématique au préscolaire. Nous avons calculé l’indice de masse corporelle (IMC) de chaque enfant (le poids corporel en kilogrammes divisé par la taille en mètres carrés) et déterminé les centiles d’âge et de sexe en utilisant les seuils de l’IOTF et des CDC. Nous avons ensuite déterminé et comparé les estimations de la prévalence de l’embonpoint et de l’obésité selon les deux systèmes de classification.

Résultats

Sur 7 369 enfants, 1 3,8 % faisaient de l’embonpoint et 11,4 % étaient obèses selon le graphique des CDC. Selon celui de l’IOTF, 11,5 % faisaient de l’embonpoint et 6,8 % étaient obèses. Les deux systèmes de classification affichaient un degré de concordance moyen (coefficient Kappa de 0,69, p<0,01).

Conclusion

Les résultats indiquent que la prévalence estimative de l’embonpoint et de l’obésité chez les jeunes enfants de la région sanitaire d’Edmonton est plus faible qu’ailleurs au Canada. Les estimations obtenues selon le graphique de l’IOTF sont plus prudentes que celles obtenues avec le graphique des CDC, ce qui s’explique davantage par les écarts dans les estimations de l’obésité que de l’embonpoint.

Mots clés

embonpoint obésité développement de l’enfant indice de masse corporelle (IMC) enfant, préscolaire 

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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Public Health, Capital HealthEdmontonCanada
  2. 2.Community Health Services, Capital HealthCanada

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