Prediction of Japanese children at risk for complications of childhood obesity: gender differences for intervention approaches

J Med Invest. 2010 Feb;57(1-2):62-8. doi: 10.2152/jmi.57.62.


Childhood obesity is one of the most serious public health problems in Japan, especially in Tokushima compared with other prefectures. This study was designed to clarify the life habits which predispose to development of obesity and can be modified through an appropriate intervention program to combat childhood obesity and its lifestyle-related diseases. A total of 216 school children from Itano Town, a municipality of Tokushima Prefecture, Japan, who are attending the fourth grade (9-10 years) of elementary schools, participated in the study from 2004 to 2007. The study included child's life habits questionnaire, investigating physical activity by recording the daily steps using a pedometer, anthropometric measurements, hematological examination and hemodynamometry in a cross-sectional survey during a two-month period from June to July every year. We conclude that there are considerable gender-related differences for developing obesity and other lifestyle-related diseases; and all intervention strategies against obesity must consider such gender differences. For example, restriction of television watching hours must be intervened for controlling obesity in boys, however for girls, promotion of exercise practice or making more steps per day with adequate sleeping periods should be intervened as the proper approaches for preventing and controlling obesity and other lifestyle-related diseases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alanine Transaminase / blood
  • Body Mass Index
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Risk
  • Sex Characteristics


  • Alanine Transaminase