Research Study Abstract

Energy Intake and Expenditure in a Sample of 45 Bolivian Urban Adolescents

  • Published on 04/2006

Objective To describe the levels of physical activity and energy intake in a sample of Bolivian Adolescents.

Setting La Paz, September-October 2004. Methodology: 45 secondary school students (19 males; 26 females; mean age 15.6 SD 1.25) wear accelerometers (Actigraph-7164; during three days. Anthropometric measurements were registered. A semi-quantitative food frequency-questionnaire was used to estimate food and energy intake.

Results The mean BMI (kg/m2) of boys was 20.5 (SD 2.96) and 20.8 (SD 2.68) of girls. Prevalence of overweight was 15% among girls. Mean energy intake was 2298 kcal (SD 879) in boys and 2124 (SD 626) in girls. Mean energy expenditure was 2641 kcal (SD 724) in boys and 2000 kcal (SD 506) in girls. Boys tended to be more active (P=0.001) and slimmer (P<0.05) than girls. BMI was significantly correlated to physical activity (Pearson’s coeff.=0.347 P=0.02).

Conclusions Bolivian adolescent boys are apparently more physically active than their female peers. This finding may explain the higher levels of overweight in adolescent girls. Interventions should focus on promoting physical activity as a healthy lifestyle particularly among female adolescents.