Tracking overweight and obesity in Japanese children; a six years longitudinal study

Takuro Nakano, Masako Sei, Ashraf A. Ewis, Hokuma Munakata, Chiemi Onishi, Yutaka Nakahori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Childhood overweight/obesity is growing steeply, globally. It is usually regarded as a risk factor for severe obesity over life-time course. Here, we investigated temporal course of overweight/obesity development in Japanese school children. A six-year longitudinal study was performed on 16,245 Japanese primary school children (8,427 boys and 7,818 girls) comprising three cohorts of 1st∼3rd grade. A baseline survey was conducted at 2001, followed by annual baseline studies from 2002∼2007 to determine the prevalence and track overweight/obesity. Our results showed that the prevalence of overweight was 15∼23% in boys and 15∼18% in girls, however, for obesity it ranged between 4∼7% in boys ; and 2∼4% in girls. As regards for tracking status, 60∼80% of overweight and 35∼70% of obese Japanese primary school boys track into overweight or obese junior high school adolescents. However, these percentages are lower among primary school girls, where only 50∼70% overweight and 30∼60% obese primary school girls track into overweight and obese adolescents, respectively. We conclude that Japanese boys are fatter than girls ; and ∼80% of overweight/obese Japanese primary school children track into junior high school overweight/obese adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-123
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Medical Investigation
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


  • Adolescent health
  • Childhood obesity
  • Japanese school children
  • Longitudinal studies
  • Tracking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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