Overweight and Obesity in Saudi Females of Childbearing
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- Validity of Self-Reported Weight and Height Among Saudi School Children and Adolescents.
Overweight and Obesity in Saudi Females of Childbearing
Al-Malki JS, Al-Jaser MH, Warsy AS.
Department of Zoology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh,
OBJECTIVE: Overweight and obesity are among the most frequently
encountered multifactorial disorders in most populations of the world. The
aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of overweight and
obesity in Saudi females of childbearing age.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study was approved by the University
Scien ﬁc Commi ee. It included a group of 600 randomly recruited healthy
females with age ranging from 16-45 y. Four hundred and twenty one were
students and 179 were housewives a ending outpa ent clinics for minor
illnesses. Informed consent was obtained. Height and weight were recorded
on one occasion. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated.
RESULTS: Height, weight and BMI showed normal Gaussian distribution in
these females and there was a significant positive correlation between BMI
and age of each subject (r=0.505; P=0.001). Prevalence of leanness,
normal weight, overweight, obesity and morbid obesity were calculated in
the total group and in different age groups. Significant increase in the
prevalence of both overweight and obesity occurred with age. Unmarried
and married females were compared and the latter had a higher prevalence
of both overweight and obesity compared to the former. This difference
persisted after taking into account differences in the age of the two groups.
Students and housewives were compared but no differences in the
prevalence were observed in the two groups.
are frequently encountered in Saudi females of childbearing age. The
prevalence of overweight and obesity was higher amongst a group of
married women than among a group of single women. There is an urgent
need to spread awareness about obesity, its consequences and ways and
means of prevention among the females.
Nutrition Research, November 2002:22(11);1243-1252
Prevalence and Risk Factors of Obesity and Overweight in
Adult Saudi Population
, Khalid Al-Rubeaan
, Abdul Rahman Al-Nuaim
a Department of Nutrition, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA
b Arizona Cancer Center, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA
c Department of Nutrition and Food Science, University of Maryland,
College Park, MD, USA
d King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence and factors
associated with obesity and overweight among adult Saudis using a national
survey data from 1990 to 1993. The study popula on included 1652 men
and 1619 women between 30 to 70 years of age. The prevalence of obesity
was 49.15% in women and 29.94% in men, while the prevalence of being
overweight but not obese was 31.55% in women and 41.91% in men. Obese
and overweight women and men were significantly more likely to be
between 40–49 years of age, with higher income, and hypertensive.
Although physical activity was low in all women, obese women were
significantly less likely to be engaged in any physical activity. Obese and
overweight men were more likely to be non-smokers. Intervention
strategies that target this population at risk are needed in Saudi Arabia.
Ann Saudi Med. 2002 Sep-Nov;22(5-6):324-8.
Comparison between Body Mass Index, Triceps Skin Fold
Thickness and Mid-Arm Muscle Circumference in Saudi
Abalkhail B, Shawky S.
Department of Community Medicine and Primary Health Care, College of
Medicine and Allied Health Sciences, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah,
Saudi Arabia. firstname.lastname@example.org
Overweight and obesity are fraught with several health problems even later
in life. The objective of this study was to estimate the overweight, obesity,
body fat and muscle content of Saudi adolescents as compared to a
recognized reference population.
adolescents in Jeddah from 42 boys' and 42 girls' schools during the month
of April 2000. Data collec on was done by personal interviews to collect
sociodemographic factors and by direct measurement of weight, height,
triceps skin fold thickness (TSF) and mid-arm circumference (MAC). The
50th, 85th, and 95th percen les (P50, P85 and P95) for body mass index
(BMI) and triceps skin fold thickness (TSF) were taken, then the 50th, 90th,
and 95th percen les (P50, P90 and P95) for the mid-arm muscle
circumference (MAMC) were calculated. These measurements were
compared with corresponding values of the National Health and Nutrition
Examination Survey I (NHANES I).
adolescents than the NHANES I and the diﬀerence was wider for P95.
Conversely, there was a lower MAMC at P90 and P95 than the NHANES I
reference population curves. The lower MAMC curves were less marked in
girls than in boys. On the other hand, Saudi boys and girls showed on
average similar body mass index indicated by BMI at P50, which was
misleading, since those adolescents showing similar body mass index had
more fatness than the average reference population indicated by TSF at
P50, and less muscularity on average than reference popula on indicated
by MAMC at P50.
CONCLUSION: Overweight and obesity with increased body fat content and
decreased body muscle content appear to be widespread among Saudi
adolescents even among those adolescents showing average body mass
index. Public health interventions are required to improve quality of food,
encourage physical activity and exercise, as well as correct the perception
of appropriate body stature.
Ann Saudi Med. 2002 Sep-Nov;22(5-6):303-7.
The Prevalence of Obesity and Overweight in 1-18-Year-
Old Saudi Children.
El-Hazmi MA, Warsy AS.
Department of Medical Biochemistry, College of Medicine, King Khalid
University Hospital and King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
overweight and obesity in Saudi children with ages ranging up to 18 years.
SUBJECTS AND METHODS: The study was a cross-sectional national
epidemiological household survey, and the study group included 12071
children (boys 6281; girls 6420), with ages ranging from 1-18 years. Their
height and weight were measured and body mass index (BMI) was
calculated. The study group was classified as obese or overweight, using
age- and sex-specific cut-off points for BMI for determining overweight and
obesity in children.
the boys and girls, respec vely, and obesity was 6.0% and 6.74% in the two
groups, respectively. The children were grouped according to the province
to which they belonged, and prevalence of obesity and overweight were
calculated for each province. The highest frequency was in the Eastern
Province, while the lowest was in the Southern Province. The children were
further grouped into 1-6, 6-12 and 12-18-year-olds and prevalence of
obesity and overweight was calculated. In addition, at yearly intervals, the
prevalence of obesity and overweight was calculated. Among the boys and
girls, the maximum prevalence of obesity was in the 2-3 year-olds. A
decrease in prevalence was found in both males and females up to the age
group of 8-13 years, and then the prevalence increased again up to the 18
overweight and obesity trends in Saudi children based on the international
sex-specific cut-off points for BMI. It also shows a variable prevalence in
diﬀerent age groups un l a er 13 years, when the prevalence rate
Saudi Med J. 2002 Aug;23(8):938-42.
Radiographic Osteoarthritis and Obesity.
Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine (38), King Khalid
University Hospital, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. email@example.com
OBJECTIVE: To determine the association between obesity and
radiographic osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee and generalized OA.
METHODS: A cross-sec onal survey of pa ents a ending 14 primary clinics
for a variety of medical complaints was conducted. They were consented,
interviewed, examined and radiographed for the presence of knee and
generalized OA. The association between OA and weight was then assessed.
This study was carried out in 14 primary care clinics in North Riyadh,
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, between September 1998 through to March
completed the study and their results were analyzed. We found a strong
association between excess weight and knee OA in females [overall ratio
(OR) 3.28 (95% conﬁdence intervals (CI), 2.07-5.36)] and a weaker link with
knee OA in males [OR 1.88 (95% CI, 1.24-2.92)]. Generalized OA was found
to be associated with obesity in females only [OR 1.93 (95% CI, 1.09-3.43)].
Reporting of joint symptoms in patients with radiographic knee OA was also
associated with obesity (P=0.0001).
CONCLUSION: Excess weight is strongly associated with knee OA in females
and symptoms of joint pain in all OA patients, with a weaker but still
significant link with male knee OA and generalized OA in females.
J Trop Pediatr. 2002 Jun;48(3):172-7.
A Comparative Study of Prevalence of Overweight and
Obesity in Children in Different Provinces of Saudi Arabia.
El-Hazmi MA, Warsy AS.
Department of Medical Biochemistry, College of Medicine & King Khalid
University Hospital, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of overweight and
obesity in Saudi children from different provinces of the country and in
diﬀerent age groups. A total of 12,701 children (6,281 boys and 6,420 girls)
with ages ranging from 1 to 18 years were enrolled during a household
screening programme in different provinces of Saudi Arabia and height and
weight were recorded. Body Mass Index (BMI) was calculated and applying
age and sex specific cut-off points for BMI the children were grouped into
overweight and obese. The overall prevalence of overweight was 10.68 and
12.7 per cent and that of obesity was 5.98 and 6.74 per cent in the boys and
girls, respectively. In the different provinces the prevalence of overweight
ranged from 8.8 to 27.4 per cent and from 9.3 to 27.6 per cent and obesity
ranged from 4.7 to 10.4 per cent and from 4.3 to 13.8 per cent in the boys
and girls, respectively. Prevalence of overweight and obesity was also
calculated a er grouping the children into 17 groups according to age. It is
concluded that overweight and obesity occur in all provinces of Saudi
Arabia although at a variable prevalence. In general, girls have a higher
prevalence of both overweight and obesity compared with boys. Eastern
province children have the highest prevalence and the Southern province
children have the lowest prevalence of overweight and obesity. When
grouped according to age, overweight and obesity tend to increase with
age. Suggestions are made to prevent overweight and obesity development
in Saudi children.
East Mediterr Health J. 2002 Jul-Sep;8(4-5):470-9.
Overweight and Obesity among Saudi Arabian Children
and Adolescents between 1994 and 2000.
Department of Community Medicine and Primary Heath Care, College of
Medicine and Allied Health Sciences, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah,
Overweight and obesity trends were investigated for schoolchildren and
adolescents in Jeddah using data from 1994 and 2000. Individuals aged 10-
20 years were selected using mul stage stratified random sampling and
direct measurements were made of body weight and height. Percentiles
were calculated for body mass index (BMI), body weight and height for
speciﬁc age and sex strata. For both sexes, BMI increased between 1994
and 2000 at the 50th percen le but higher s ll at the 85th and 95th
percentiles. The increase in body weight and BMI were marked for all age
groups; however boys showed the largest increase aged 10-16 years,
whereas girls showed the lowest at 14-16 years. Public health intervention
is crucial to prevent or reduce overweight and obesity among youth.
Saudi Med J. 2002 Jul;23(7):831-7.
Validity of Self-Reported Weight and Height Among Saudi
School Children and Adolescents.
Abalkhail BA, Shawky S, Soliman NK.
Department of Community Medicine and Primary Health Care, Faculty of
Medicine and Allied Health Sciences, King Abdul-Aziz University, PO Box
80205, Jeddah 21589, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. firstname.lastname@example.org
height to actual weight and height in a cross-sectional representative
sample of school students in Jeddah City, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its
relation to selected socio-economic and socio-demographic factors. Also to
evaluate the validity of self-reported weight and height measurements.
METHODS: Data was collected from a sample of Saudi school students in
Jeddah City, KSA from 42 boys' schools and 42 girls' schools during the
month of April 2000. Data collec on was carried out by an in-person
interview to collect sociodemographic and self-reported weight and height,
as well as, actual measurement of weight and height. Body mass index was
classified according to age and genders into underweight (<15th
percen le), normal weight (>=15th percen le to <85th percen le),
overweight (>=85th percen le to <95th percen le) and obesity (>=95th
percentile). Validity of self-reported obesity, as compared to measured
body mass index, was assessed.
RESULTS: A total of 2,860 Saudi school students were enrolled in the study
with an age range from 9 to 21 years (mean=13.9, standard devia on=2.8).
Overweight was reported in 13.4% and obesity in 13.5% of school students.
Overweight and obesity were more marked among those of at least 13
years of age, male of high social class and students with highly educated
mothers. Slightly above half of the school children were unaware of their
weight and height giving an unknown body mass index in approximately
60% of cases. Among the remaining 40% who reported their weight and
height, underes ma on of weight was around 2.7 kg and was mainly
among girls, in 16-21 year old group, high socio-economic class and born
from educated mothers. Overes ma on of height by 4 cm was reported
mainly among the overweight, obese, girls, those with at least 16 years of
age. Sensitivity of determining obesity by reported weight and height was
low especially among girls and those of at least 16-years of age while
specificity was more among boys than girls and improved by increase in
CONCLUSION: Our results display the inaccuracy of self-reported weight
and height in tracking obesity in our youth population. These results also
emphasize the need for community and school based programs for
preventing and reducing obesity in school age through improving the
nutritional status awareness, diet habits and life style in order to ensure
health and longevity.
CONCLUSION: The prevalence of childhood obesity is escalating and
approaching figures that have been reported till now from the developed
countries. Less healthy dietary habits and poor selection of food may be
responsible for this high prevalence.
Saudi Med J. 2002 Feb;23(2):144-50.
Physical Activity, Fitness and Fatness among Saudi
Children and Adolescents: Implications for Cardiovascular
Exercise Physiology Laboratory, King Saud University, PO Box 9792, Riyadh
11423, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
During recent years, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has witnessed a
tremendous development at an astounding rate. The standard of living rises
and mechanization has been apparent in all aspects of people's life. As
industrialization and modernization progress, a number of changes in
physical activity and eating habits are likely to occur. Indeed, physical
inactivity and sedentary living with associated low level of physical fitness
are increasingly becoming prevalent in the Saudi society. These lifestyle
changes undoubtedly carry unfavorable consequences on health outcomes
of the Saudi population. This paper reviews the status of physical activity
among Saudi children and adolescents and discusses its implications to
cardiovascular health and fitness. From the available evidences, it appears
that most Saudi children and adolescents do not meet the minimal weekly
requirement of moderate to vigorous physical activity necessary for
effectively functioning cardiorespiratory system. Furthermore, active Saudi
boys tend to have favorable levels of serum triglycerides and high density
lipoproteins-cholesterol compared with inactive boys. Sixteen percent of
Saudi schoolboys are considered obese (fat content is above 25% of body
mass). Body fat percent of Saudi boys seems to have increased over the
past decade. Body fatness correlated significantly with several coronary
artery disease risk factors. Based on the available evidences, promotion of
physical activity among Saudi children and adolescents appears warranted
and national policy encouraging active living is also needed.
East Mediterr Health J. 2001 Jul-Sep;7(4-5):716-24.
Central Obesity in Elderly Individuals in South-Western
Saudi Arabia: Prevalence and Associated Morbidity.
Abolfotouh MA, Daffallah AA, Khan MY, Khattab MS, Abdulmoneim I.
Department of Family Health, High Institute of Public Health, University of
Alexandria, Alexandria, Egypt. email@example.com
Central obesity in all individuals aged 65 years and over (n = 810) in the
catchment areas of three primary health care centres in Abha was
determined from the waist circumference (WC) and waist-to-hip ratio
(WHR). The age-adjusted prevalence of central obesity was 32.4% and
43.5% based on the WC and WHR indicators respec vely. WC was
significantly associated with the risk of diabetes and hypertension, while
WHR was significantly associated with the risk of diabetes only. These
findings suggest that reducing the prevalence of central obesity in old age
would decrease the risk of diabetes and hypertension. WC is a powerful
independent predictor mainly of hypertension risk, while WHC is a good
predictor of the risk of diabetes.
Saudi Med J. 2001 Sep;22(9):784-9.
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