Epidemiologic and physiologic approaches to understanding the etiology of pediatric obesity: finding the needle in the haystack

Reilly, J. J., Ness, A. R. and Sherriff, A. (2007) Epidemiologic and physiologic approaches to understanding the etiology of pediatric obesity: finding the needle in the haystack. Pediatric Research, 61(6), pp. 646-652. (doi:10.1203/pdr.0b013e3180536667)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1203/pdr.0b013e3180536667

Abstract

Recent increases in the prevalence of childhood obesity have created an urgent need for preventive strategies, but such strategies in turn depend on an improved understanding of the etiology of pediatric obesity. There is a dearth of evidence of the cause of pediatric obesity at present, with much of the literature of limited quality, inconclusive, and contradictory. The present review highlights the paradox of energy imbalance—its apparent simplicity but actual complexity—and the difficulties in etiologic research that arise from this complexity. The review identifies a number of emerging problems for etiologic studies. The review also makes a number of proposals that might improve future etiologic studies and provides a framework for integrating the diverse body of evidence of etiology that will become available in future. Gathering improved evidence of etiology, and then integrating and interpreting it, will take many years. In the meantime, an emphasis on developing more effective preventive interventions is necessary.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Sherriff, Dr Andrea and Reilly, Prof John
Authors: Reilly, J. J., Ness, A. R., and Sherriff, A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Dental School
Journal Name:Pediatric Research
Journal Abbr.:Pediatr. Res.
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN:0031-3998
ISSN (Online):1530-0447
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