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No Association between Obesity and Behavior in Low-income, Preschool Latino Children



The relationship between behavioral problems and obesity in early childhood in Latinos is largely unknown.


Cross-sectional anthropometric and behavioral data of children at three years of age were gathered from a cohort of 174 children of Latina mothers at two San Francisco hospitals. Child behaviors were assessed using the preschool Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL/1½-5). Logistic regression was used to analyze the association between behavior and obesity.


At three years, 27.7% were obese. There were no associations between affective (OR = 1.89; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.42-8.59), anxiety (OR = 1.86; 95% CI 0.53-6.47), pervasive developmental (OR = 0.42; 95% CI 0.13-1.36), attention deficit hyperactivity (OR = 0.58; 95% CI 0.12-2.76), or oppositional defiant (OR = 6.49; 95% CI 0.65-64.49) problems and obesity.


Though psychological problems and obesity are associated among older children and adolescents, there was no association in Latino three-year olds in a low-income sample.

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