Assessment of obesity and dietary pattern of staff in a university in south eastern Nigeria
Background: Obesity is a major health problem resulting from unhealthy eating practices.
Objective: This study was carried out to assess the prevalence of obesity and dietary pattern of staff of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
Methods: The study employed a cross-sectional study design. Four hundred respondents were randomly selected for the study using a multi-stage sampling technique. The population comprised of male and female staff which included academic and non-academic staff of the university. A structured questionnaire was designed for data collection. The pretested questionnaire was interviewer-administered. It was used to obtain information on the snack consumption pattern, alcohol and other drinks consumption pattern of the respondents. Anthropometric measurements of the respondents were taken using standard procedure. The anthropometric results of the subjects were compared and classified using the World Health Organization Standard. Data obtained were coded and entered into the computer and analyzed using statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) Version 17 using descriptive statistics: frequencies and percentage.
Results: The result showed that half (50.0%) of the respondents were overweight, 32.5% of them had normal weight while 12.5% were in Obesity Class I, 2.0% were in Obesity Class II and 3.0% were underweight. More than half of the respondents (69.0%) took unhealthy snacks (highly processed) daily while less than half of the respondents took alcoholic drink daily.
Conclusion: A high prevalence of overweight and unhealthy snacking pattern was observed among the University staff.
Keywords: Obesity, dietary pattern