Objective: Obesity has become one of the main public health problems worldwide. Childhood obesity rate is growing very fast in both developed and developing countries. This paper aimed to explore the prevalence of overweight and obesity among school children aged 10-13 years in Bahrain, and to find out the difference in this prevalence when using two international standards. Methods: A multistage stratified sampling procedure was used to select 2146 students (1068 males, 1078 females) from public schools in Bahrain. Weight and height were measured and Body Mass Index for age and sex was calculated to determine the obesity levels. Both International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) and World Health Organization (WHO) references were used to determine the prevalence of overweight and obesity. Results: The findings revealed that the prevalence of overweight and obesity ranged from 15.7% to 28.9% among males and from 21.1% to 30.7% among females. The WHO reference standard provided higher prevalence of overweight and obesity than IOTF reference. Conclusion: The study confirmed that obesity is a problem of concern in Bahraini school children and calls for intervention programme to combat obesity in schools. However, the standard used to determine obesity levels should be carefully selected and interpreted.
Musaiger, A. O., Al-Mannai, M., & Al-Marzog, Q. (2014). Overweight and obesity among children (10-13 years) in bahrain: A comparison between two international standards. Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, 30(3). https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.303.4796