Prevalence and trends of obesity and hypertension among young adult medical students – a cross sectional study

Authors:Renu Lohitashwa, Parwati Patil
Int J Biol Med Res. 2013; 4(4): 3540-3543  |  PDF File


Background and objectives Overweight and obesity are recognized as an “escalating epidemic” affecting both developed and developing countries. WHO has declared obesity as a disease of pandemic significance.Intrauterine events for the unborn child and factors during early development years predispose a child to disor¬ders such as obesity, prediabetes and metabolic syndrome. Objective of the present study was to know the prevalence and trends ofobesity and hypertension among young adult medical students. Materials and methods The present cross sectional study was conducted in department of Physiology, J N Medical College, Belgaum from January 2009 to December 2009, with a sample size of 427 young adult medical students aged 17 – 20 years. Obesity indices measured were BMI, WC, WHpR and WHtR using standard protocol. Standard protocol was also used for measuring the blood pressure. Results The result of the present study revealed a significant increase in number of overweight and obesity and also hypertension. According to BMI 19.9% of study participants were overweight at risk. Prevalence of obese I was seen in 17.7%of subjects and prevalence of obese II was significantly present in 6.7%of subjects.The prevalence of central obesity was 53.6% using waist circumference, while 73.3% of them had an above normal WHpR. Prevalence in prehypertension stage was 51.8%, while the prevalence of stage I and stage II hypertension was 6.1% and 0.9% respectively. Conclusion Results of present study reveal the increased risk of development of obesity and hypertension in young adult age group at an earlier age. Hence, it’s necessary for implementing an effective prevention and health promotion programs targeted towards young adult age group.