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Original Papers

Prevalence and associations of overweight among adult women in Sri Lanka: a national survey

Authors:

Renuka Jayatissa ,

Department of Nutrition, Medical Research Institute, Ministry of Health, Colombo,, LK
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SM Moazzem Hossain,

UNICEF, AF
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Sandya Gunawardana,

Department of Nutrition, Medical Research Institute, Ministry of Health, Colombo,, LK
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JM Ranbanda,

Department of Nutrition, Medical Research Institute, Ministry of Health, Colombo,, LK
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Malsha Gunathilaka,

Department of Nutrition, Medical Research Institute, Ministry of Health, Colombo,, LK
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PC De Silva

Department of Nutrition, Medical Research Institute, Ministry of Health, Colombo,, LK
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Abstract

The rates of overweight and obesity are rising to epidemic proportions, especially among women. There are many health risks associated with increased weight. This study aims at providing information on the overweight and obesity and its associated factors among non pregnant and non lactating women aged 15 to 49 years in Sri Lanka. Multistage cluster sampling method was used. A household survey was carried out in nine districts, each randomly selected from all 9 provinces. Thirty Grama Nildhari areas per district were selected, each cluster consisting of 21 randomly selected households. Data collection was by an interviewer administered questionnaire. Weight and height were measured and body mass index (BMI) calculated. International classification was used to identify overweight women. Total of 6071 households were included in the study. Of the 27,862 residents in the selected households, 27.3 percent were women aged between 15 and 49 years. Of them, 18.2% had BMI <18.5 (thin), 52.4% were BMI between 18.5-24.9 (normal), 22.8% were between 25.0 and 29.9 (overweight) and 6.6% were BMI 30.0 or above (obese). When Asian cutoff value is applied 37.8% (BMI 18.5-23.0), 28.7% (BMI 23.01-27.5) and 15.2% (BMI>27.5) were normal, overweight and obese respectively. Higher level of husband’s education and higher wealth quintiles were associated with risk of overweight or obesity. Increasing level of overweight and obesity prevalence among women between 15-49 years indicates the important role of health professionals in promoting preventative measures and encouraging positive lifestyle behaviors of women during health encounters. We recommend counseling women about safe and effective weight loss and weight management programs.

Sri Lanka Journal of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism 2012; 2: 61-68

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/sjdem.v2i2.4774

How to Cite: Jayatissa, R. et al., (2012). Prevalence and associations of overweight among adult women in Sri Lanka: a national survey. Sri Lanka Journal of Diabetes Endocrinology and Metabolism. 2(2), pp.61–68. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sjdem.v2i2.4774
Published on 18 Oct 2012.
Peer Reviewed

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