ORIGINAL PAPER
Assessment of nutritional status of selected group of children living in urban and rural areas in Upper Silesia, in the intervening five years
 
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1
Pediatric Nursing Department in Bytom, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland
2
Chair and Department of Pediatrics in Bytom, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland
3
Department of Nursing and Midwifery, Higher School of Strategic Planning, Dąbrowa Górnicza, Poland
4
ul. Legionów Polskich 125/71, 41-310, Dąbrowa Górnicza, Poland
 
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2011;24(2):177–183
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ABSTRACT
Objective: The aim of the paper is to assess changes in nutritional status of a selected group of children from urban and rural environment in Upper Silesia in the intervening 5 years. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted twice - in 2003 and during the school year 2008/2009, and involved children from the town of Bytom and from the village Boronów. To assess the nutritional status, the following measurements were used - weight, height and thickness of subcutaneous fold. Body Mass Index (BMI) was also calculated. The results obtained were referred to the appropriate percentile charts. Measurement values, which were located below the 10th percentile or above the 90th percentile were treated as incorrect. Statistical analysis included only those children who participated in the I and II survey. The frequency of the anthropometric measurements and BMI exceeding the accepted limits of norms in both studied environments and between them, 5 years after the previous evaluation, were compared. Results: In both environments, the number of pupils whose body mass exceeded the value of the 90th percentile increased. The number of pupils whose body mass was lower than the 10th percentile also increased in the city, but decreased in the country. Considering BMI, the percentage of children located above the norm increased as well in comparison to the first study. In addition, it was also found that the thickness of subcutaneous skin-fold difference between the studied communities was significant in both the first (p = 0.020) and the second survey (p = 0.015), as well as in each environment, after 5 years since the previous evaluation (Bytom: p = 0.001; Boronów: p = 0.32). Conclusion: In 5 years (2003-2008), the incidence of overweight of pupils increased in both groups. The percentage of pupils who weighed less than 10th percentile increased to a greater extent in urban environment than in rural areas.
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