Topic 1 Definition of obesity

  • Overweight is weight-for-height greater than 2 standard deviations above WHO Child Growth Standards median
  • Obesity is weight-for-height greater than 3 standard deviations above the WHO Child Growth Standards median
https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight
  • Overweight is BMI-for-age greater than 1 standard deviation above the WHO Growth Reference median
  • Obesity is BMI-for-age greater than 2 standard deviations above the WHO Growth Reference median.
https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight
  • Rates of overweight and obesity continue to grow in adults and children.
  • From 1975 to 2016, the prevalence of overweight or obese children and adolescents aged 5–19 years has increased more than four-fold from 4% to 18% globally.
  • Obesity is one side of the double burden of malnutrition and today more people are obese than underweight in every region except sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.
  • Once considered a problem only in high-income countries, overweight and obesity are now dramatically on the rise in low- and middle-income countries, particularly in urban settings.
  • The vast majority of overweight or obese children live in developing countries, where the rate of increase has been more than 30% higher than that of developed countries.

Multiple factors has led to unhealthy eating habits and the consequent increase in childhood obesity:

  • Increased consumption of processed foods, high in trans fats, salt and sugar
  • Rapid urbanization
  • Not walking to school and other places
  • Spending more time in front of television and computers