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עמוד בית
Tue, 05.12.23

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April 2021
Uri Gabbay MD MPH, Doron Carmi MD MHA, Aviva Mimouni-Bloch MD, Bat El Goldstein MD, Lital Keinan-Boker MD MPH, and Joseph Meyerovitch MD

Background: Evaluation of children's anthropometrics poses challenges due to age-related changes. The main focus is on height and weight. However, since weight is height-dependent, body mass index (BMI) is the best surrogate measurement of adiposity. Israel has not developed national growth tables; therefore, researchers and clinicians utilize either World Health Organization (WHO) or U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tables as benchmarks.

Objectives: To evaluate the anthropometrics of Israeli children benchmarked by CDC and WHO tables.

Methods: A retrospective review was conducted of the 1987–2003 birth cohort (age 4–18 years) from Clalit Health Services databases. Anthropometrics were retrieved twice: at study entry and one year later. We evaluated them as separate cohorts. Gender-specific age-matched median height and BMI were compared with CDC and WHO height and BMI tables.

Results: The study consisted of 15,650, mean age at study entry 9.5 years (range 4–18). Gender-specific median heights of the Israeli children were similar to CDC and WHO values at younger ages, but were slightly shorter than the age-matched CDC and WHO toward the age of final height in both cohorts. However, gender-specific median BMI was considerably and statistically significant higher compared to CDC and WHO values consistently along the entire age range in both cohorts.

Conclusions: Israeli children were slightly shorter toward the age of final height, compared to WHO and CDC. However, BMI in Israeli children was significantly higher compared to the CDC and WHO consistently along the age range, which raises an alarm regarding obesity patterns

September 2008
I. Grotto, S. Zarka, R. D. Balicer, M. Sherf, and J. Meyerovitch

Background: In view of the rising prevalence of obesity, the identification of young adult populations at risk is important for the formulation of intervention and prevention programs.

Objectives: To assess demographic and behavioral factors associated with an increase in body mass index in young healthy adults and to identify the incidence of overweight/obesity in this population.

Methods: Data on anthropometric measures, demographic characteristics, and health behaviors were collected retrospectively for a representative sample of young Israeli adults (11,391 men, 11,280 women) on their release from military service (age 20–22 years) between 1989 and 2003. The incidence of overweight (BMI[1] < 25-< 30 kg/m2), incidence of obesity (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2), and increase in BMI during military service were calculated.

Results: The average increase in BMI during military service was 1.11 kg/m2 in males and 1.08 kg/m2 in females. A greater increase was positively associated with low paternal education and smoking cessation, and negatively associated with high physical activity. Twelve percent of subjects with a normal BMI on recruitment became overweight, and 21.7% of overweight subjects became obese. On multivariate logistic regression analysis, a higher incidence of overweight was associated with low education level (in both the subject and his or her father) in both genders, and non-use of oral contraceptives and low level of physical activity in females.

Conclusions: BMI appears to increase significantly during early adulthood. Intervention programs should be targeted specifically at subjects with low education or who started smoking before age 18, and physical activity (especially among females) should be encouraged.

[1] BMI = body mass index

November 2007
J. Meyerovitch, R. Goldman, H. Avner-Cohen, F. Antebi and M. Sherf

Background: The prevalence of obesity among children and adolescents in the western world has increased dramatically.

Objective: To assess the efficiency of routine childhood obesity screening by primary physicians in the pediatric population in Israel and the utilization of health services by overweight children.

Methods: The electronic medical records of children aged 60–83 months registered in 39 pediatric primary care centers between January 2001 and October 2004 (n=21,799) were reviewed. Those in whom height and weight were documented during a clinic visit (index visit) were classified as overweight, at risk of overweight, and normal weight by body mass index percentiles. The number of visits to the pediatrician, laboratory tests and health care costs 12 months after the index visit were calculated.

Results: Anthropomorphic measurements were performed in 1556 of the 15,364 children (10.1%) who visited the clinic during the study period. Of these, 398 (25.6%) were overweight, 185 (11.9%) were at risk of overweight, and 973 (62.5%) were normal weight. Children in the first two groups visited the clinic slightly more often than the third group, but the differences was not statistically significant (P = 0.12), and had significantly more laboratory tests than the rest of the children visiting the clinics (P = 0.053). Health care costs were 6.6% higher for the overweight than the normal-weight children.

Conclusions: Electronic medical records are a useful tool for population-based health care assessments. Current screening for obesity in children during routine care in Israel is insufficient and additional education of community pediatricians in diagnosis and intervention is urgently needed.


March 2000
Joseph Meyerovitch MD, Trevor Waner BVSc PhD, Joseph Sack MD, Juri Kopolovic MD and Joshua Shemer MD

Background: Despite current treatment protocols, the long-term complications of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus have prompted the investigation of strategies for the prevention of IDDM.

Objectives: To investigate the effect of oral vanadate in reducing diabetes type I in non-obese diabetic mice.

Methods: Sodium metavanadate, 3.92 mmol/L, was added to the drinking water of 8-week-old female NOD mice. Blood glucose levels, water consumption and body weight were measured, and the end point of the study was judged by the appearance of hyperglycemia in the mice.

Results: Treatment with vanadate did not significantly reduce the incidence of type I diabetes as compared to the control group. However, oral vanadate therapy significantly reduced the blood glucose levels after the fourth week of treatment compared to the control group (3.83±10.67 vs. 4.44±10.83 mmol/L, P<0.03). There was a consistent and significant increase in body weight of the vanadate-treated pre-diabetic NOD mice compared to the controls. Diabetic mice treated with vanadate had significantly lower levels of serum insulin as compared to control diabetic mice (104±27 vs. 151±36 mol/L, P<0.03). Histologically, no significant differences were found in inflammatory response of the islets of Langerhans between the control and treated groups.

Conclusions: This study suggests that the post-receptor insulin-like effect induced by vanadate is not sufficient to prevent the development of diabetes and insulitis in pre-diabetic NOD mice.



IDDM= insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus

NOD= non-obese diabetic

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