Prevalence of overweight, obesity and thinness among adolescents in rural and urban areas of Enugu State, Nigeria
Background: Overweight and obesity in adolescence are powerful risk factors of chronic diseases in adulthood.
Objective: To determine the prevalence of overweight, obesity and thinness among adolescents in rural and urban areas of Enugu State, Nigeria.
Method: A total of 500 adolescents (10-19 years) consisting of 220 males and 280 females were randomly selected from 12 study schools in the State. A structured questionnaire was used to collect data on background information of the adolescents. Anthropometric measurements (weight and height) of the adolescents were obtained, and used to calculate the Body Mass Index (BMI). The BMI were categorized into obesity, overweight, normal and thinness using the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) reference and the WHO adult BMI classification for adolescents up to 19 years. The data obtained were coded and analyzed into means, frequencies, percentages and chi-square using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS), version 17.
Results: The prevalence of overweight, obesity and thinness among adolescents were 7.5%. 2.1% and 13.9%, respectively. The prevalence of obesity among the adolescents in urban areas was 4.1% while none of the rural adolescents was obese. There was a higher prevalence rate of obesity among males than among females.
Conclusion: Obesity is creeping into traditional societies as evident in this study.
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