Topical Area: Nutrition Education and Behavioral Science, Obesity
Objectives : To investigate the determinants of overweight and obesity in adults attending General Out-patient University College Hospital
Methods : The study was a case-control study and was conducted over a period of five months. Interviewer-administered questionnaires were applied to consenting adult patients aged 18 – 60 years. The cases were respondents with Body Mass Index (BMI) ≥ 25 kg/m2 and were selected through a systematic random sampling technique until a total of 171 was attained while the controls were respondents with BMI < 25 kg/m2 that were matched by age group and sex on a ratio of 1:1 to make a total sample of 342 respondents. The questionnaire covered questions on demographic data, physical activity, dietary intake and neighbourhood environmental variables.
Results : The mean BMI of the control and case groups were 21.74(±2.35) kg/m2 and 30.08(±4.25) kg/m2 respectively. One hundred and two (59.6%) of the cases were overweight and 69(40.4%) were obese. One hundred and eighteen (69%) of the overweight/obese respondents were females. Respondents with low physical activity were 5.5 times more likely to be overweight/obese than if they were involved in high physical activity. Respondents who disagreed to having access to commercial or public places by walking were about 6.7 times more likely to be overweight/obese than if they agreed to having access to commercial or public places by walking. Calorie intake was not a predictor of overweight/obesity in the study.
Conclusions : Low physical activity and poor access to commercial facilities within a neighbourhood are risk factors for overweight/obesity in this study. Public health education is urgently needed in order to prevent and control the occurrence of overweight and obesity.
Funding Sources : Self Sponsored
University College Hospital