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Study on body fat and its relation to Non Communicable Disease related metabolic derangement in Sri Lankan children

NRC Grant:  14-027

Dr. M.G. Sathiadas
Dept. of Paediatrics
Faculty of Medicine
University of Jaffna
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Area of Research: Medical Science



a) To provide information on percentage fat content and possible anthropometric markers of NCD-related metabolic derangements and iron status of 5-15 year old children living in Jaffna district of Sri Lanka. 

b) To estimate the percentage fat content and anthropometric measurements among children living in Jaffna district of Sri Lanka.

c) To determine the associations of percentage fat content and anthropometric measurements with adverse health outcomes related to NCD in each gender.

d) To identify the BMI or WC value that would give the best estimate of the percentage fat content that is associated with adverse health outcomes related to NCD.

e) To identify the iron status of the children  to assess the impact of the iron supplementation on iron status of these children.


The cut off values to describe metabolic syndrome is derived from a western population and is not suitable to the Sri Lankan situation.  A study in the year 2011 and published both at local and international journals and presented at the Sri Lanka Medical Association oration for the year 2012. This shows our children are prone to get metabolic syndrome at different cut off values.   Hence this study an extension of the one done in Colombo will help to improve the knowledge and thereby the quality of the health care.   The study was confined to Colombo District and the plan is to an island wide study so that cut off values can be derived to the Sri Lankan population.  Hence this is the second area to be explored.  This will give landmark results for the Sri Lankan policy makers to implement the cutoff values. Thereby our children can benefit and early detection and interventions can be implemented. This study will help to identify the fat content and anthropometric measurements of Sri Lankan children, Percentage of fat at which metabolic derangements of NCD would occur and BMI and waist circumference cutoff levels that should be used for screening children for such metabolic derangements of NCD.  Once the cut off values are obtained Sri Lankan standards can be made and implemented.  If this study shows significant differences from the western values the Sri Lanka College of Paediatricians will help to implement the values.