Stagnation in body mass index in Denmark from 1997/1998 to 2004/2005, but with geographical diversity

Mathilde Svendstrup, Nils Jacob Knudsen, Torben Jørgensen, Lone Banke Rasmussen, Lars Ovesen, Hans Perrild, Peter Laurberg

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Abstract

INTRODUCTION: We analyzed the trend in body mass index (BMI) as well as in the prevalence of overweight and obesity among Danish adults, mainly women, from 1997/1998 to 2004/2005 and evaluated any regional differences. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Data were drawn from two cross-sectional population-based studies conducted in parallel in Aalborg and Copenhagen from 1997/1998 and 2004/2005. Height and weight were measured in a total of 7,487 participants in the two cohorts. RESULTS: In the total cohort, we found no significant difference in BMI from 1997/1998 to 2004/2005 (p = 0.828). There was an increase in BMI in Aalborg of 0.32 (p = 0.030), while in Copenhagen we observed a statistically significant decrease in BMI of 0.30 (p = 0.017). The difference in change over time in BMI between the two regions was significant (p = 0.002). Also the difference in the trend in prevalence of overweight and obesity was statistically significant between the two cities (p = 0.010). CONCLUSION: Our results indicate that the obesity epidemic is leveling off - at least among women - and that it may even be receding in Copenhagen. Nevertheless, the absolute average BMI values and the prevalence of overweight and obesity in both cities are high which underlines the need for further initiatives to prevent obesity-related health risks in the future.
Original languageEnglish
JournalDanish Medical Bulletin (Print)
Volume58
Issue number12
Pages (from-to)1-5
ISSN0907-8916
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Cite this

Svendstrup, M., Knudsen, N. J., Jørgensen, T., Rasmussen, L. B., Ovesen, L., Perrild, H., & Laurberg, P. (2011). Stagnation in body mass index in Denmark from 1997/1998 to 2004/2005, but with geographical diversity. Danish Medical Bulletin (Print), 58(12), 1-5.