THE PREVALENCE OF OBESITY AND ITS DETERMINANTS AMONG 7 YEARS OLD CHILDREN IN TURKEY
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Childhood obesity is one of the most serious public health challenges of the 21st century. In Turkey, obesity is one of the adulthood and childhood public health concerns just like in the world. Obesity is one of the important causes of Non- Communicable Diseases and related mortality. This study focuses on obesity including overweight prevalence among 7 years of children in the 2nd class and its linkages with socio-economic determinants with the perspective of determinants of health in Turkey in order to provide insights for governmental actions. The data of the study are from the Turkey Childhood Obesity Surveillance (COSI TUR) that was conducted by the Ministry of Health in 2016. The survey was conducted in all provinces with a representative sample that was selected by TURKSTAT. The dependent variable of the study is the obesity status of the children. The main independent variable is the SES index. The other covariates are as follows: gender, eating habits, physical activity status (transport to school, attending sports activities etc.), family income, parent’s BMI, parent’s education, parent’s employment status). The study includes both descriptive analyses and a series of multivariate analyses with logistic regression in SPSS 23.0. In our model reinforces the importance of SES and its factors for childhood obesity. Higher SES was significantly related to a higher risk of obesity among children in all models. Sex is a consistent predictor of obesity across all the models. Among the male children, using a vehicle for transportation, whose mother and/or father is obese, whose birth-weight is over 3500 gr are under the risk of obesity. Making physical activity is an important factor to prevent childhood obesity. For children who make not at all or less than 1 h/day physical activity, the risk of obesity increase approximately 2 times. Children who eat pizza and others frequently per week were 1.3 times more likely to be obese than children who eat seldom per week. Interestingly, there was no relation between child obesity and frequency of consumption sugar, sugar drink, and pastry. Tackling obesity should start at the childhood and strategies should include all sector and stakeholder.