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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Self discipline and obesity in Bangkok school children

Chutima Sirikulchayanonta*, Wasoontara Ratanopas, Paradee Temcharoen and Suwat Srisorrachatr

Author Affiliations

Department of Nutrition, Faculty of Public Health, Mahidol University. 420/1 Rajvithi Road, Rajthevi district, Bangkok 10400, Thailand

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BMC Public Health 2011, 11:158  doi:10.1186/1471-2458-11-158

Published: 10 March 2011



Childhood obesity has become an important public health problem in Thailand. This study aimed to determine the relationship between self discipline and obesity in Bangkok school children.


A case control study was conducted. 140 cases (obese children) and 140 controls (normal weight children) were randomly chosen from grades 4-6 students in 4 Bangkok public schools. Questionnaire responses regarding general characteristics and child self-discipline were obtained from children and their parents.


Self discipline in eating habits, money management and time management were reported at significantly lower levels among the obese group (p < 0.05). After controlling all other variables, it was revealed that the ranking of factors associated with obesity by adjusted odds ratio (OR) were low self-discipline in managing expenses (3.1), poor home environment (3.0,), moderate self-discipline in time management (2.9), television viewing time ≥2 hours/day (2.6), an obese father (2.2), and an obese mother (1.9).


It was recommended that parents and teachers participate in child self-discipline guidance, particularly with regard to eating habits, money management and time management in a supportive environment that both facilitates prevention of obesity and simultaneously develops a child's personal control.