Deficits in anthropometric indices of nutritional status and motor performance among low birth weight children from Maputo City, Mozambique.
| ID: mdl-28176405
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate associations between low birth weight (LBW) and anthropometry, body composition, physical fitness, and gross motor coordination among schoolchildren from Maputo, Mozambique. METHODS: A total of 353 children aged 7 to 10 years old from both genders born in Maputo (Mozambique) were sampled. The sample was divided into two groups: LBW (n = 155) and normal birth weight (NBW, n = 198). Body composition measurements and indices weight-for-age, height-for-age, and weight-for-height were assessed. Physical fitness was assessed by handgrip strength, flexibility, agility, long jump, and running speed. Gross motor coordination was evaluated by using the Korper Koordination Test fur Kinder (KTK) battery. RESULTS: LBW children were lighter and smaller than NBW children with reduced indices for weight-for-age and height-for-age. They also showed a reduced performance in handgrip strength and sideways movement tests. These differences remained significant even after adjustment for age, gender, body size, and fatness skinfold thickness. CONCLUSION: LBW seems to be the major factor that influences anthropometry, and is a predictor of low muscle strength and low performance on sideways movement tests. This result suggests that growth faltering in LBW children is associated with adverse health consequences, even after controlling for gender, age, fatness, and body size.