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A community based study on nutritional status of rural adolescent girls

Author: 
Dr. Shwetha and Dr. Vinay, M.
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Background: Adolescence is the period of transition from childhood to adulthood. This critical period of transition is identified by a range of ages. World Health Organization has defined adolescence as a period between the age group of 10 to 19 years. Around 1 in 6 persons in the world is an adolescent: that is 1.2 billion, most of them in the developing countries. Current nutritional status of adolescent girls will decide the well being of the present as well as the future generations. Under-nutrition among girls is associated with reduced lean body mass, lack of muscular strength and decreased work capacity. In the absence of effective nutritional interventions, the low birth weight girls become the next generation of stunted mothers, thus, perpetuating the vicious cycle of malnutrition. Adolescence provides a second opportunity for girls to attain ‘catch up growth’ and break the intergenerational cycle of malnutrition provided there is a significant increase in their nutrient intake. However, the state of rural adolescent girls in India is quite dismal. Objectives: 1. To assess the nutritional status of adolescent girls 2. To determine the association between socio-demographic characteristics and nutritional status Methods: The present study was a cross sectional study, conducted in Keregodu, PHC, the rural field practice area of Department of Community Medicine MIMS, Mandya. The data was analyzed by percentages and descriptive statistics. Chi-square test was used to determine the association between socio demographic factors and nutritional status of adolescent girls Results: Total adolescent girls included in our study were 302. Mean age of the adolescent girls was 14.3 (+ 2.12) years. The prevalence of malnutrition was 65.3%. Around 34.8% were having normal BMI, 59.3% were underweight, and 6.0%were overweight. There was significant association between nutritional status with education status and SES of adolescent girls Conclusion: The prevalence of malnutrition among adolescent girls was high and there was significant association between Socio demographic characteristics like SES and literacy status.

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