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Family Income Gradients in Adolescent Obesity, Overweight and Adiposity Persist in Extremely Deprived and Extremely Affluent Neighbourhoods but Not in Middle-Class Neighbourhoods: Evidence from the UK Millennium Cohort Study

1
School of Psychology, University of Lincoln, Lincoln LN6 7TS, UK
2
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Imperial College London, London W2 1PG, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(2), 418; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17020418
Received: 26 December 2019 / Revised: 3 January 2020 / Accepted: 4 January 2020 / Published: 8 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Territorial and Social Health Inequalities)
We investigated whether family income gradients in obesity, overweight, and adiposity persist at geographic-level deprivation quintiles using a nationally representative cohort of UK adolescents. Data from 11,714 eligible adolescents from the sixth sweep of the Millennium Cohort Study (14 years old) were analysed in this study. The International Obesity Task Force age- and sex-specific thresholds were used to define obesity and overweight. Self-reported family income was standardized using the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)’s equivalised income scale. Geographic-level deprivation was defined by the index of multiple deprivation 2004. Results showed that the prevalence of obesity and overweight was 8.0% and 27.2%, respectively. Mean percentage body fat was 16.9% (standard error, SE = 0.2%) in male and 27.3% (SE = 0.1%) in female adolescents. Risk of obesity, overweight, and adiposity increased with decreasing family income quintiles (p for trend <0.001). After stratifying by geographic-level deprivation quintiles, a U-shaped association emerged, whereby family income gradients in the risk of adolescent obesity and adiposity persisted in extremely affluent and extremely deprived neighbourhoods but attenuated to non-significance in middle-class neighbourhoods. These results focus on the findings from England. Recognition of the persistence of inequalities in the risk of obesity in the most deprived and affluent neighbourhoods may be necessary in planning public health resources and interventions. View Full-Text
Keywords: socioeconomic; deprivation; geographic variation; adolescence; obesity; adiposity; BMI; inequality; family income socioeconomic; deprivation; geographic variation; adolescence; obesity; adiposity; BMI; inequality; family income
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Mireku, M.O.; Rodriguez, A. Family Income Gradients in Adolescent Obesity, Overweight and Adiposity Persist in Extremely Deprived and Extremely Affluent Neighbourhoods but Not in Middle-Class Neighbourhoods: Evidence from the UK Millennium Cohort Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 418.

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