Overweight, Obesity and Underweight Is Associated with Adverse Psychosocial and Physical Health Outcomes among 7-Year-Old Children: The 'Be Active, Eat Right' Study

A. van Grieken, C.M. Renders, A.I. Wijtzes, R.A. Hirasing, H. Raat

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background:Limited studies have reported on associations between overweight, and physical and psychosocial health outcomes among younger children. This study evaluates associations between overweight, obesity and underweight in 5-year-old children, and parent-reported health outcomes at age 7 years.Methods:Data were used from the 'Be active, eat right' study. Height and weight were measured at 5 and 7 years. Parents reported on child physical and psychosocial health outcomes (e.g. respiratory symptoms, general health, happiness, insecurity and adverse treatment). Regression models, adjusted for potential confounders, were fitted to predict health outcomes at age 7 years.Results:The baseline study sample consisted of 2,372 children mean age 5.8 (SD 0.4) years; 6.2% overweight, 1.6% obese and 15.0% underweight. Based on parent-report, overweight, obese and underweight children had an odds ratio (OR) of 5.70 (95% CI: 4.10 to 7.92), 35.34 (95% CI: 19.16; 65.17) and 1.39 (95% CI: 1.05 to 1.84), respectively, for being treated adversely compared to normal weight children. Compared to children with a low stable body mass index (BMI), parents of children with a high stable BMI reported their child to have an OR of 3.87 (95% CI: 1.75 to 8.54) for visiting the general practitioner once or more, an OR of 15.94 (95% CI: 10.75 to 23.64) for being treated adversely, and an OR of 16.35 (95% CI: 11.08 to 24.36) for feeling insecure.Conclusion:This study shows that overweight, obesity and underweight at 5 years of age is associated with more parent-reported adverse treatment of the child. Qualitative research examining underlying mechanisms is recommended. Healthcare providers should be aware of the possible adverse effects of childhood overweight and also relative underweight, and provide parents and children with appropriate counseling. © 2013 van Grieken et al.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere67383
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume8
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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