Background and Purpose: National prevalence of overweight and obesity (OW/OB) among children remains high; surveillance of OW/OB at state- and local-levels is needed. This study determines the prevalence and sociodemographic predictors of OW/OB among preschool-age children in San Luis Obispo (SLO) County.

Methods: Cross-sectional convenience samples of Head Start, California State, and private preschools were surveyed in 2006 (n=482), 2009/10 (n=559), and 2014 (n=442). At all waves, preschool children aged 3-5 years were measured for height and weight using standardized stadiometer and digital scale protocols. In 2014, parents completed a demographics questionnaire.

Results: Children assessed in 2009/10 and 2014 were more likely to be OW/OB than those assessed in 2006 (p=0.016). Unadjusted, bivariate odds ratios illustrated increased risk for OW/OB was associated with Hispanic ethnicity, residing in a lower income household, attending preschool in southern SLO County, and participation in a Head Start preschool. In the adjusted, multivariable model, increased risk for OW/OB was associated with attending preschool in SLO City and participation in a California State or Head Start preschool.

Conclusion: OW/OB trends in SLO County are similar to national trends. Programs to continue to monitor and reduce socioeconomic disparity in OW/OB prevalence among young children are needed.


Kinesiology | Public Health

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URL: https://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/kine_fac/161