Inverse Correlation between Helicobacter pylori Colonization and Pediatric Overweight: A Preliminary Study

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Background: Helicobacter pylori, one of the most common bacterial pathogens in humans, is generally acquired during childhood. The inverse correlation between H. pylori colonization and obesity that was found in adults has not been investigated in depth in children. Our aim was to assess the correlation between overweight and obesity and H. pylori colonization in a pediatric population. Methods: H. pylori colonization in 70 symptomatic children was determined after antral biopsies during esophagogastroduodenoscopy. Data on anthropometric measurements, sociodemographic characteristics, and medical history were recorded. Results: The participants' mean age was 12.41 ± 3.16 years, 58% were females, and 24% were obese or overweight (BMI >85th percentile). The H. pylori colonization rate was 31%. There were no significant differences between the H. pylori-infected and H. pylori-noninfected groups in terms of age, gender, or clinical and sociodemographic characteristics. Nevertheless, the prevalence of overweight and obesity was significantly lower in children with H. pylori colonization compared to children with normal histology (31% in the noninfected group compared to 11% in the infected group, p = 0.04). The mean fat percentage was 24.3 ± 8.8 and 19.4 ± 6.9, respectively (p = 0.02). Conclusions: The findings of this prospective study are in agreement with previous studies and demonstrate an inverse relationship between H. pylori colonization and overweight or obesity among symptomatic children. A larger prospective, multiethnic investigation is warranted to more definitively determine the extent of this association.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-271
Number of pages5
JournalChildhood Obesity
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2017


  • Helicobacter pylori colonization
  • Obesity
  • Pediatric population


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