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Nutritional variation and coronary risk factors among Saudi school children

Al-Shehri, Sulieman Naser; (1998) Nutritional variation and coronary risk factors among Saudi school children. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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The Objective of this project was to assess the nutritional status of a group of school children and to determine the risk variables that may predispose them to coronary heart disease (CHD) later on. The study was conducted among 1585 pupils selected randomly from 30 primary schools representing all the primary schools in Riyadh City (capital of Saudi Arabia). Two age groups were included, 8.5-9.5 and 11.5-12.5 years, boys and girls. Sociodemographic aspects, physical activity and fitness, dietary pattern and intake were measured. Blood levels of micronutrients and vitamins, blood count and lipid profile were preformed. Blood pressure, heart rate and anthropometry were measured. The participation rate was 80.6%. Boys had 17% higher activity score than girls; in addition they had higher values for VO2max. The hypoactivity level was higher for girls. 8.3% of all pupils have a risky blood pressure. Total cholesterol (TC), high density lipoprotein cholesterol ratio (HDL/TC), triglycerides (TG) and low density lipoprotein (LDL) risky levels for boys were 33.4%, 5.1%, 26.3% 30.4%) and for girls 32.1%, 6.8%, 41.8%), 35.8% respectively. Obesity was detected among 11.6%) boys and 14.1%) among girls. Anaemia prevalence was higher among girls than boys (9.0%, 7.1% respectively). A positive correlation was detected between socioeconomic level and blood lipid risk factors. Similar correlation were elicited between BMI and LDL as well as between body fat percent and TG, TC, LDL. One or more CHD risk variables were present among 52.2%) and 71.6%) boys and girls aged 8.5-9.5 years respectively. They were present in 59.0% and 72.3% among those aged 11.5-12.5 years. Hypoactivity, hypercholesterolaemia and obesity were the main prevalent risk factors. A positive family history of cardiovascular disease was much lower in Saudi schoolchildren compared with industrialized countries. Saudi boys had 3.9% (1.7-6.1%) compared with 32.3% (26.5-38.1%) in a similar study of schoolchildren in Northern Ireland, where CHD rates are among the highest in the world. However the level of combined risk factors was even higher in Saudi children than children from Northern Ireland. 26.5% of boys and 15.5% of girls in Saudi had > 3 risk factors compared with 17.1% of boys and 11.2% of girls in Northern Ireland. These findings suggest that Saudi Arabia faces an epidemic of cardiovascular disease in the next century unless risk factors levels are reduced by appropriate interventions. The study signifies the importance of early intervention for CHD risk factors in childhood to prevent its emergence in adulthood.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Nutritional variation and coronary risk factors among Saudi school children
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Health and environmental sciences; Nutritional status; Saudi Arabia
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10103657
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