A Population Based Study of Overweight and Obesity in Urban Southern India

Kambar, Sanjay; Kavi, Avinash; Chingale, Ashwini; Purohit, Poornima; Praveen, G. S.
January 2014
Indian Journal of Preventive Medicine;Jan-Jun2014, Vol. 2 Issue 1, p15
Academic Journal
Background: Overweight and Obesity though not an immediate lethal disease by itself is a significant risk factor associated with a range of serious non-communicable diseases. Worldwide, overweight and obesity cause more deaths than underweight. Transition of lifestyle due to rapid urbanization is a contributing factor for increased prevalence of lifestyle diseases. Objective: To determine the prevalence of overweight and obesity in urban population and to study the relationship of obesity with age. Methodology: A population based cross sectional study was conducted among 1000 subjects (43.8% males and 56.2% females) aged 20 and above residing in urban areas of Belgaum, South India. Data was collected using pretested questionnaire and physical measurements including weight, height, Waist Circumference (WC) and Hip Circumference (HC) were obtained. Body Mass Index (BMI) and Waist to Hip ratio (WHR) was calculated. Data was analyzed with SPSS 16.0 version using chi-square test for statistical significance. Results: The overall prevalence of overweight and obesity was 23.4% and 7.9% respectively. Females had higher prevalence of both overweight and obesity (25.0%, 10.0%) when compared with that of males (21.2%, 5.2%) respectively (p=0.0039). Majority of the overweight and obese participants were in the age group of 40 - 49 years. Central obesity assessed using WHR observed that 42.6% of the females and 34.8% of the males were at high risk (p=0.012) and increased waist circumference among females was 46.5% and in males was 36.1% (p=0.001). Conclusion: High prevalence of overweight and obesity in the urban population establishes the urgent need to consider it one of the top priorities in formulation of national health policies and reducing the health care costs arising due to hazards of obesity.


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