Virtual Conference
Nutrition 2022

Edna M. Gamboa-Delgado

Universidad Industrial de Santander, Colombia

Title: Consumption of dietary supplements and its association with excess weight in school children from Bucaramanga, Colombia.


Introduction: Childhood obesity is a global public health problem. One of the underlying causes of this complex and multi-causal event is related to high energy intake. The use of dietary supplements is considered necessary and effective in cases of demonstrated nutritional deficiencies, while improper use could exceed energy and nutrient requirements, leading to excessive body weight gain in children.
Objective: To determine the prevalence of consumption of dietary supplements and its association with excess weight in school children from Bucaramanga, Colombia.
Methods: Analytical cross-sectional study. 54 children were included, in whom the presence of overweight or obesity defined by BMI/A (+ 2DS overweight; + 3DS obesity) was evaluated, body composition was determined by bioelectrical impedance. The consumption of dietary supplements and other socioeconomic and demographic variables by direct questioning. Bivariate and multiple analyzes were performed using regression models.
Results: This study included children, between 6 and 12 years of age. 89% of the children had been breastfed and 74% had started complementary feeding at 6 months.
The prevalence of the consumption of dietary supplements was observed in 49% of the children, of which 52% received more than one of these. The most frequently used dietary supplements corresponded to polymeric formulas, cod liver oil, zinc supplement with vitamins and minerals and multivitamin with iron, calcium and phosphorus.
Excess weight evaluated by BMI was presented in 44% of the children, with a prevalence of obesity of 22%, while 11% had a risk of thinness and 45% had an appropriate BMI for age. It was evidenced, by impedance, that 69% of the participants had a high percentage of body fat.
Of the children who were overweight, 45% received dietary supplements in early childhood; however, no positive association was demonstrated between the consumption of these supplements and the nutritional condition presented.

Finally, it is necessary to continue developing similar projects that can evaluate the impact of dietary supplements at an early age on the increase in weight and body fat as another relevant factor in the increase in the prevalence of overweight and obesity in pediatric age.


Edna Gamboa has completed his PHD at the age of 36 years from National Public Health Institute, Mexico. She is professor in Nutrition Department of Universidad Industrial de Santander, Colombia. He has over 50 publications that have been cited many times. She has developed several nutrition research projects related with chronic diseases and nutrition, nutritional epidemiology and evaluation of nutrition education programs.