APH 2001, 59, 113-135:
Body mass, obesity and fitness among young men.
Keywords: body mass, body mass index, obesity, body, weight, fitness, health status, aptitude, young men
- To assess the evolution of body mass (BMI), obesity and overweight among conscripts
- To test variations according to age, region, language
Main findings: All analysis showed very significant associations.
Time trend: BMI increased: + .65kg/mē, taking into account region "age-class"; the prevalence of obesity more than double; that of overweight was multiplied by at least 1.3 (up to age 24).
"Age-class": BMI was significantly higher for the eldest (26+) compared to the youngest (18): + 1.12kg/mē, taking region and time trend into account. However "age-class" is linked to education: university graduates underwent the test at an older age.
Region: BMI was always higher in Wallonia: + .45kg/mē versus Flanders, taking "age-class" and time trend into account.
Medical assessment: 10.1% of the conscripts were rejected for medical reasons; 16.5% were refused when the BMI reached 30, up to 77% from BMI 40 on. Those exclusions represent about 7% of all young men concerned (including those who did not shop up at the examination); outside the procedure under review, an extra 5% were exempted for medical reasons.
Conclusions: The time trend in BMI proved very significant. BMI was linked to age-class and region. Obesity strongly affected inability to join the armed forces. Due to the risks associated to obesity, action should be taken.