Background and Aim: Pediatric obesity and overweight have become worldwide epidemics. Iran is not an exemption in this regard. In the last decade, numerous studies have been conducted in Iran in relation to obesity in children, and an increasing rate of obesity has been reported in the Iranian context. Some of these studies have included an extensive domain covering several provinces, while others have been limited to few cities. In this study, the papers focusing on the prevalence of overweight and obesity in school-aged children in Iran were reviewed.
Methods: This study was a systematic review. The key terms “child”, “obesity”, “overweight”, and “Iran” were searched for in PubMed, Scopus, Ovid, ProQuest, and Elsevier databases. Similarly, the key terms’ translations in Persian were searched for in Magiran, Iranmedex, Medlib, and SID. Non-repetitive papers conducted from 2001-2013 holding the key terms in their abstracts, keywords, or main body were extracted and reviewed.
Results: A total number of 20 Persian and 11 English papers were reviewed. The overall prevalence rate of obesity in primary-school children in the published literature varied considerably from 1.4% in Zahedan to 17.7% in Ahwaz, and the prevalence rate of overweight from 1.5% in Zahedan to 27.4% in Sari.
Conclusion: Overweight and obesity prevalence rates are varied across Iran and high in certain regions – a fact which may be attributed to climatic, racial and temporal characteristics.