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Title: Childhood obesity: Facts and parental perceptions
Authors: Abbas, Nivine H. 
Rouaiheb, Hiba
Saliba, Jessica 
El‑Bikai, Rana
Affiliations: Department of Public Health 
Department of Public Health 
Keywords: Childhood obesity
Parental perceptions
Community health
Nutritional health
Issue Date: 2023-11-14
Publisher: World Academy of Sciences Journal
Part of: World Academy of Sciences Journal
Volume: 5
Issue: 38
The present study aimed to depict the parental perception of children's weight status and associated health risks. The present study was a cross‑sectional study collecting anthropometric measures among children and data using a parental survey in 2020‑2021 in private elementary schools. A total of 191 subjects were eligible for analysis. The body mass index of the children and parents was calculated. The perceived child weight status was compared to the actual weight status. Parental knowledge of obesity‑related health risks and sources of concerns was assessed using a scoring system. Quantitative variables were reported as average, standard deviation, first and third quartiles. Qualitative variables were reported as frequencies and percentages. Statistical tests were used to assess significance levels, set at P<0.05. More than half of the children were overweight (30%) or obese (25%). However, the parents underestimated their child's weight status (61%) and were unconcerned about them becoming overweight (52%), despite solid knowledge about the related health risks. The maternal weight status was associated with the underestimation of child weight (P=0.0068). Being overweight did not rank high on sources of parental concerns. It is thus suggested that parents need to be made aware of their child's weight status. Efforts are needed to spread awareness about childhood obesity health risks.
DOI: 10.3892/wasj.2023.215
Open URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Department of Public Health

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