OBJECTIVE: Using meta-regression this paper sets out the minimum change in body mass index-SD score (BMI-SDS) required to improve adiposity as percentage body fat for children and adolescents with obesity.
SETTING: Studies were identified as part of a large-scale systematic review of the following electronic databases: AMED, Embase, MEDLINE via OVID, Web of Science and CENTRAL via Cochrane library.
PARTICIPANTS: Individuals aged 4-19 years with a diagnosis of obesity according to defined BMI thresholds.
INTERVENTIONS: Studies of lifestyle treatment interventions that included dietary, physical activity and/or behavioural components with the objective of reducing obesity were included. Interventions of <2 weeks duration and those that involved surgical and/or pharmacological components (eg, bariatric surgery, drug therapy) were excluded.
PRIMARY AND SECONDARY OUTCOME MEASURES: To be included in the review, studies had to report baseline and post-intervention BMI-SDS or change measurements (primary outcome measures) plus one or more of the following markers of metabolic health (secondary outcome measures): adiposity measures other than BMI; blood pressure; glucose; inflammation; insulin sensitivity/resistance; lipid profile; liver function. This paper focuses on adiposity measures only. Further papers in this series will report on other outcome measures.
RESULTS: This paper explores the potential impact of BMI-SDS reduction in terms of change in percentage body fat. Thirty-nine studies reporting change in mean percentage body fat were analysed. Meta-regression demonstrated that reduction of at least 0.6 in mean BMI-SDS ensured a mean reduction of percentage body fat mass, in the sense that the associated 95% prediction interval for change in mean percentage body fat was wholly negative.
CONCLUSIONS: Interventions demonstrating reductions of 0.6 BMI-SDS might be termed successful in reducing adiposity, a key purpose of weight management interventions.
TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: CRD42016025317.
- body fat
- body mass index