C-Reactive protein levels are associated with adiposity and a high inflammatory foods index in mountainous Cypriot children Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND & AIMS: Inflammatory marker levels have long been associated with obesity status in adult populations, but relevant data are scarce in children, especially in diverse races. The aim of this study was thus to examine the association between overall and central obesity and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in Cypriot children of Greek ancestry. METHODS: Eighty three children (9.2 ± 1.7 years) were studied. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated according to the age-sex specific International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) criteria while body fat percentage (BF%) was measured via leg-to-leg bioelectric impedance (BIA). Central obesity was defined as waist circumference ≥ 75 th percentile. Physical activity was assessed using a pedometer and diet quality was evaluated by applying the KIDMED index. An inflammatory foods' index, composed of nine foods/food groups, was also calculated. CRP levels were measured using a high-sensitivity (hs) immunoassay. RESULTS: Obese children, children with excess BF% and children with WC ≥ 75 th percentile were 7.35, 6.84 and 7.81 times (P < 0.05) respectively more likely to have hs-CRP levels ≥ 0.10 mg/dL; a high score of the dietary inflammation index was positively associated with CRP levels. CONCLUSIONS: Obesity is associated with increased hs-CRP levels in 6-12 year-old children, a finding that supports the inflammation-obesity hypothesis at an early stage of life. Furthermore, frequent consumption of inflammatory foods is positively related to CRP levels.

publication date

  • December 2010