Risk factors of obesity in a cohort of 1001 Cypriot adults: An epidemiological study

Hippokratia 2012; 16(3):256-260

E. Andreou, Pg. Hajigeorgiou, K. Kyriakou, Th. Avraam, G. Chappa, P. Kallis, Ch. Lazarou, Ch. Philippou, C. Christoforou, R. Kokkinofta, C. Dioghenous, Sc. Savva, A. Kafatos, A. Zampelas, D. Papandreou


Background and Aims: To measure the prevalence of overweight and obesity in adults in the Republic of Cyprus, and to evaluate and relate possible obesity risk factors of the adult Cypriot population.
Methods: This is an epidemiological cross-sectional study on a stratified random sample of 1001 (48.5% males-51.5% females) subjects, aged 18-80 years old. Anthropometric, biochemical, and dietary/lifestyle characteristics included in the study.
Results: The prevalence of overweight (Ow) and obesity (Ob) was 46.9% and 28.8% for males and 26% and 27% for females, respectively. Overweight and obese subjects were found to have statistically significant higher levels of Body Mass Index (p<0.001), Waist circumference (p<0.001), Total serum cholesterol (p<0.001), Low density lipoprotein (p<0.005), Glucose (p<0.007) and Triglycerides (p<0.001) compared to normal peers. In addition, Ow and Ob participants consumed significantly lower levels of fruits and vegetables (p<0.001), exercised less time/d (p<0.001) and smoke more cigarettes/d (p<0.001), compared to normal subjects, respectively. In multiple regression analysis of factors associated with overweight and obesity, Waist Circumference (beta: 1.132, p<0.001), Glucose (beta: 0.892, p<0.045), alcohol consumption (beta: 0.563, p<0.001), and exercise levels (beta: -0.444, p<0.001), were the most significant ones.
Conclusion: The prevalence of overweight and obesity is very high in Cypriot adults. The current study also revealed a significant positive relation of Ow and Ob with waist circumference, high blood glucose levels and increased consumption of alcohol and a negative one with decreased levels of exercise.