Changes in body composition of University students in a country in socio-economic transition
Kotnik, Katja Zdesar; Golja, Petra
Aim: The present study examined body composition of students and aimed to evaluate their risk for obesity. Methods: Height, body mass, body mass index (BMI), triceps skinfold, the percentage of body fat tissue as determined from triceps skinfold, and waist circumference were analysed in 286 20-year old subjects, born in the forties, sixties and eighties of the last century. Percentage of overweight was determined according to BMI, triceps skinfold, and waist circumference. Results: The results indicate that a positive secular increase continues in height, body mass, triceps skinfold, the percentage of body fat tissue, and waist circumference for both genders. BMI did not identify a statistically significant increase in the percentage of overweight students over three generations, while triceps skinfold and waist circumference demonstrated statistically significant increases in accumulation of peripheral and abdominal fat, especially in females. Conclusion: The findings confirm that according to BMI Slovenia experiences an intermediate level of overweight young males, but a relatively low level of overweight females. However, when other measures for assessing overweight are considered, it is indisputable that in young Slovenians overweight and thus obesity-related health risks are increasing in both genders.