Rex, K. F.2; Larsen, N. H.2; Rex, H.2; Niclasen, B.3; Pedersen, M. L.2
1 Health in Greenland, National Institute of Public Health, Det Sundhedsvidenskabelige Fakultet, SDU2 unknown3 Health in Greenland, National Institute of Public Health, Det Sundhedsvidenskabelige Fakultet, SDU
OBJECTIVES: To estimate the proportion of gender-specific thinness, overweight and obesity among children born in 2005 at school entry in Greenland and to compare figures between the capital, Nuuk, with the rest of Greenland. STUDY DESIGN: A cross-sectional study based on data from Electronic Medical Records (EMR). METHODS: All children born in 2005 with permanent address in Greenland at the time of data extraction with a registered weight and height in EMR from January 1st 2011 to January 31st 2013 were included in the study. Information about height without shoes and weight in light indoor clothing was obtained. Body Mass Index (BMI) was calculated. Participants were categorized into age and gender-specific weight classes based on the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) cut-offs for child overweight, obesity and thinness. RESULTS: A total of 842 children born in 2005 were identified. Of those, 72% (N=607, 308 boys and 299 girls) had a recorded weight and height in the study period. In total, 74.6% (71.2-78.1) were categorized as of normal weight. The proportion of children with overweight was 15.8% (12.9-18.7) while 6.8% (4.8-8.8) were obese. In all, 2.9% were categorized as thin. The proportion of overweight among boys (12.7%) was lower (p=0.031) than among girls (19.1%), and boys in Nuuk had a lower median BMI compared to the rest of Greenland. No differences in distribution of age and gender-specific overweight and obesity were observed between the capital and the rest of Greenland. CONCLUSION: Nearly 1 quarter of Greenlandic children are overweight or obese at school entry. No differences were observed between Nuuk and the rest of Greenland. Information about weight and height is available in the EMR for the majority of all children at school entry in Greenland. Continuous monitoring of the proportion of overweight and obesity among children using data from the EMR in Greenland is recommended.
International Journal of Circumpolar Health, 2014, Vol 73