1 in 3 Children in UAE Overweight or Obese

Obesity rates among young people in the United Arab Emirates are continuously increasing. Currently one in three children is either overweight or obese. This was revealed by researchers when the findings of the Abu Dhabi Childhood Obesity Study were announced on Tuesday.

When compared to numbers recorded ten years ago, the study clearly shows an increasing trend of obesity in all age groups. The most common risk factors are also identified, according to the scientists. Abu Dhabi Childhood Obesity Study was carried out by researchers from the Zayed Military Hospital and the College of Medicine and Health Sciences at UAE University and included 1,440 children in school age from Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and the Western Region. Doctors looked at 1,035 Emirati students and around 300 expatriates for a period of one year. They reported their body mass indexes (BMI), their age and gender, their food choices, as well as their physical activity and overall health. The eating habits and health statuses of their parents were also assessed.

According to the results, 34 percent of all participating children were either overweight (14.2), or obese (19.8). In addition, adolescents were the age group with the highest rates of obesity – around 40 percent of them were obese. The research also discovered that boys were more likely to be obese and girls were more likely to be overweight. The children in general consumed too few fruits and vegetables, and the rates of exercise were also insignificant. The study also found a link between parent’s weight and their children’s weight – a child with overweight or obese parents was 30 percent more likely to be heavy and to overeat. The scientists say that obesity is only partially genetically predisposed. What really matters is children’s lifestyle which is usually determined and modeled by parents’ habits and lifestyle. If you are overeating and avoiding exercise, your child will copy your example.

That’s why doctors stress on prevention, especially in families where parents are overweight. According to statistics, around 40 million children under the age of five are overweight globally. 30 percent of British and American kids are overweight, 38 percent in Europe, 27 percent in the Western Pacific, and 22 percent in Southeast Asia.

Research additional information:
Private investment raising UAE healthcare quality, but staffing remains a challe... Private investment is helping drive the United Arab Emirates towards its goal of implementing international best-practice in healthcare by 2021, but t...
Investors View Gold as Opportunistic Short-term Investment in Specific Markets During the first three months of 2015, commodity net inflows reached roughly $7 billion, strongest level in 2.5 years, but Barclays’ analysts doubt ...
Expo 2020 Logo Competition Sees Record Participation Even though World Expo 2020 will kick off in a little over five years, Dubai has already started to establish itself as one of the event’s most ambi...
Singapore Tops Biggest Global School Ranking; UAE 45th Once again Singapore excels when it comes to education – the country now tops the biggest global school rankings, published by the Organization for ...
Dubai’s Economic Growth Slowed by Low Oil Prices The outlook for Dubai’s economy remains positive, although there’s been a deceleration in growth in some industries after the oil prices fall, obs...
Emirates Skywards and Heathrow Announce New Partnership Emirates and Heathrow have announced the launch of a new strategic partnership that will bring increased earning and redemption options for members of...
Celebrating Moms on Mother’s Day Many countries around the world mark Mother’s Day on 8 March, the International Women’s Day, but in the US, as well as in most of South America, p...
Isra’a Wal Miraj Holiday in UAE Announced The UAE has declared Saturday May 16 as official public holiday to mark Al Isra’a Wal Miraj, according to the Federal Authority of Human Resources. ...
Residential Rents in Sharjah Stabilize The stabilisation of rents across Sharjah’s residential property market has resulted in rental costs remaining unchanged during Q1 2015, following a...
13 UAE Companies on “The World’s Biggest Public Companies” List Etisalat leads the set of UAE firms that made it to the Forbes list of “The World’s Biggest Public Companies” in 2015. A total of 13 Emirati com...