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Research Article

Prevalence of Stunting, Underweight and Obesity in School Aged Children in Uyo, Nigeria

D.C. Opara, E.E. Ikpeme and U.S. Ekanem
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There is a paucity of data on the prevalence and trends of the risk factors associated with diet related chronic diseases in school-aged children in Nigeria. Using international reference standards, we determined the prevalence of underweight, stunting and obesity in school aged children in both privately owned and public schools in a fast growing state capital in the South-south region of Nigeria in a cross sectional prevalence survey. The height and weight measurements of 985 children aged 31-150 months (2½-14 years) were taken; food preference and socio-demographic characteristics of children were determined using a semi-structured questionnaire. BMI was calculated from the data. The results showed that the prevalence of underweight, stunting and obesity were 27.3, 17.1 and 11.1% respectively in the private schools and 39.4, 25.3 and 0.2% in the public schools. The food preference showed the predominance of refined highly processed foods. This study provides evidence of the co-existence of both undernutrition and obesity in the study population. While underweight and stunting remained high in the public schools, obesity existed alongside underweight and stunting in the privately owned schools, presumably patronized by the elite and medium or high socio-economic groups.

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  How to cite this article:

D.C. Opara, E.E. Ikpeme and U.S. Ekanem, 2010. Prevalence of Stunting, Underweight and Obesity in School Aged Children in Uyo, Nigeria. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 9: 459-466.

DOI: 10.3923/pjn.2010.459.466


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