ESPE Abstracts (2015) 84 P-3-889

Dietary Patterns in a Group of Obese Children

Raluca Pop & Marian Pop


University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Tirgu Mures, Romania


Background: Obesity and overweight are important disturbances, considering their consequences, especially in children. Diet composition is an important factor involved in weight management.

Objective and hypotheses: The aim of this study was to analyse the food pyramid and dietary patterns of obese children.

Method: An observational study was conducted targeting obese children from Romania. The study included 63 children, age 3–18, who presented to the endocrinology clinic from February 2013–April 2014. Variables: age, sex, environment, food pyramid. Method: each legal representative filled a food frequency questionnaire with 126 items regarding the child’s diet and each child had his height and weight measured using validated tools. A web-based nutritional assessment tool was used for FFQ analysis, which returned the food pyramid and diet composition analysis.

Results: Sex ratio favoured girls (1.36:1) and the mean age was 9.4±3.5 years. All the children were above the 99th percentile in BMI. The average food pyramid followed the recommended number of portions for cereals and fruits & vegetables, but for sweets, fat and meat the number of portions was above recommendations. There are only minor differences in dietary patterns of boys vs girls (oranges as the most often fruit), but on a more detailed analysis, girls eat more vegetables than boys and healthier cereals. Children in rural areas tend to choose unhealthier foods.

Conclusion: Obese children eat too many portions of sweets, fat and meat, choose the unhealthy options from the cereal and eat fruits more likely than vegetables. Web-based nutritional assessment tools are an easy option for diet evaluation, even in small children.

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