Predictors of overweight and obesity in adult women in Nairobi province, Kenya

SOURCE: BMC Public Health
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
TITLE AUTHOR(S): R.W.Mbochi, E.Kuria, J.Kimiywe, S.Ochola, N.P.Steyn
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 7435
HANDLE: 20.500.11910/3245

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Background: Since obesity in urban women is prevalent in Kenya the study aimed to determine predictors of overweight and obesity in urban Kenyan women. Methods: A cross-sectional study was undertaken in Nairobi Province. The province was purposively selected because it has the highest prevalence of overweight and obesity in Kenya. A total of 365 women aged 25-54 years old were randomly selected to participate in the study. Results: Higher age, higher socio-economic (SE) group, increased parity, greater number of rooms in the house, and increased expenditure showed greater mean body mass index (BMI),% body fat and waist circumference (WC) at highly significant levels (p <0.001). Most of the variance in BMI was explained by age, total physical activity, percentage of fat consumed, parity and SE group in that order, together accounting for 18% of the variance in BMI. The results suggest that age was the most significant predictor of all the dependent variables appearing first in all the models, while parity was a significant predictor of BMI and WC. The upper two SE groups had significantly higher mean protein (p <0.05), cholesterol (p <0.05) and alcohol (p <0.001) intakes than the lower SE groups; while the lower SE groups had significantly higher mean fibre (p <0.001) and carbohydrate (p <0.05) intakes. A fat intake greater than 100% of the DRI dietary reference intake (DRI) had a significantly greater mean BMI (p <0.05) than a fat intake less than the DRI. Conclusions: The predictors of overweight and obesity showed that urbanization and the nutrition transition were well established in the sample of women studied in the high SE groups. They exhibited a sedentary lifestyle and consumed a diet high in energy, protein, fat, cholesterol, and alcohol and lower in fibre and carbohydrate compared with those in the low SE groups.