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  • 1. Nyberg, Gisela
    et al.
    Ekelund, Ulf
    Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences.
    Yucel-Lindberg, Tulay
    Modeer, Thomas
    Marcus, Claude
    Differences in metabolic risk factors between normal weight and overweight children2011In: International Journal of Pediatric Obesity, ISSN 1747-7166, E-ISSN 1747-7174, Vol. 6, no 3-4, p. 244-252Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background. The effect of overweight on metabolic risk factors and the role of physical activity (PA) in pre-pubertal children is unclear. Objective. To study differences in metabolic risk factors between groups of normal weight and overweight children and how these risk factors are associated with objectively measured PA and cardio-respiratory fitness (CRF). Design. A cross-sectional study was conducted with 68 children aged 8-11 years. Children were categorized into normal weight (n = 39) and overweight/obese (n = 24/5). PA and CRF were measured objectively. An oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) was performed and triglycerides (TG) and HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C) were measured. A metabolic risk score (MRS) was calculated from the standardized values of insulin, glucose, TG, inverted HDL-C and blood pressure. Results. There was a significant (P < 0.05) difference between normal weight and overweight children in clustered metabolic risk, insulin (AUC), fasting insulin and systolic blood pressure. PA and CRF did not differ significantly between groups. In linear regression analysis combining the two groups, PA was negatively associated with insulin (AUC) (beta = -0.25, 95% CI = -0.50, -0.002) and CRF was negatively associated with fasting insulin (beta = -0.41, 95% CI = -0.67, -0.15). Conclusions. Metabolic risk factors are elevated in overweight pre-pubertal children compared with normal weight controls. This is not explained by lower PA or CRF in the overweight group although PA and CRF were associated with lower insulin levels in pooled analyses. This highlights the importance of preventing overweight in children from an early age in order to prevent the metabolic syndrome and its associated diseases.

  • 2. Ridgway, C. L.
    et al.
    Brage, S.
    Anderssen, S.
    Sardinha, L. B.
    Andersen, L. B.
    Ekelund, Ulf
    Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences.
    Fat-free mass mediates the association between birth weight and aerobic fitness in youth2011In: International Journal of Pediatric Obesity, ISSN 1747-7166, E-ISSN 1747-7174, Vol. 6, no 2-2, p. E590-E596Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Objective. To investigate whether birth weight acts as a biological determinant of later aerobic fitness, and whether fat-free mass may mediate this association. Methods. The European Youth Heart Study (EYHS) is a population-based cohort of two age groups (9 and 15 years) from Denmark, Portugal, Estonia and Norway. Children with parentally reported birth weight >1.5 kg were included (n = 2 749). Data were collected on weight, height, and skinfold measures to estimate fat mass and fat-free mass. Aerobic fitness (peak power, watts) was assessed using a maximal, progressive cycle ergometer test. Physical activity was collected in a subset (n = 1 505) using a hip-worn accelerometer and defined as total activity counts/wear time, all children with >600 minutes/day for >= 3 days of wear were included. Results. Lower birth weight was associated with lower aerobic fitness, after adjusting for sex, age group, country, sexual maturity and socio-economic status (beta = 5.4; 95% CI: 3.5, 7.3 W per 1 kg increase in birth weight, p < 0.001). When fat-free mass was introduced as a covariate in the model, the association between birth weight and aerobic fitness was almost completely attenuated (p = 0.7). Birth weight was also significantly associated with fat-free mass (beta = 1.4; 95% CI: 1.1, 1.8, p < 0.001) and fat-free mass was significantly associated with aerobic fitness (beta = 3.6; 95% CI: 3.4, 3.7, p < 0.001). Further adjustment for physical activity did not alter the findings. Conclusion. Birth weight may have long-term influences on fat-free mass and differences in fat-free mass mediate the observed association between birth weight and aerobic fitness.

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