Author : Ali Musa, Wafaa


Meaad K. Hassan; Wafaa Ali Musa

The Medical Journal of Basrah University, 2010, Volume 28, Issue 1, Pages 1-8
DOI: 10.33762/mjbu.2010.49368

A cross-sectional study was conducted to estimate the frequency of overweight and obesity among infants and
children aged 6-60 months in Basrah, and its association with different socio-demographic factors, dietary habits and
physical activity of the child. Five-hundred fifty infants and children aged 6-60 months (283 males and 267 females)
attending five primary health care centers in Basrah city during the period from November 2006 till the end of April
2007 were recruited. The frequency of overweight was 10.5% and for obesity 3.3% as calculated by weight for height
Z-score for all children of different age groups. For children older than 2 years, the frequency of overweight was 7.6%
and of obesity 3.6% using Body Mass Index. The study has revealed that there is a significant positive association
between father's education, age, weight at birth, and the number of hours of television watching with overweight and
obesity, while there was significant negative association between the duration of breastfeeding and
overweight/obesity. Although the prevalence of wasting is still high (11.1%) in Basrah, at the same time another
public health problem (obesity) emerges. There is a highly significant protective effect of breastfeeding against
development of obesity if feeding continues for > 6 months.