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Open Access Nutritional status of adult Santal men in Keonjhar District, Orissa, India

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Background. Although tribal people constitute a sizable proportion of India's population, there is little information on their anthropometric and nutrition status.

Objective. The present study was undertaken to study the anthropometric characteristics of adult Santal males. It also attempted to evaluate their nutritional status based on body-mass index (BMI) and mid-upper-arm circumference (MUAC).

Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted of adult (aged > 18 years) male Santals, a tribal population of Keonjhar District, Orissa, India. A total of 332 Santals from five villages (Gourshinga, Kashibera, Kumunia, Majhisahi, and Sonatangri) in the Anandapur Region of Keonjhar District were included in the study. These villages are located approximately 150 km from Bhubaneswar, the provincial capital of Orissa. Anthropometric measurements, including height, weight, and MUAC, were performed according to a standard protocol. Nutritional status was evaluated on the basis of internationally accepted cutoff points of BMI and MUAC.

Results. The mean height, weight, MUAC, and BMI of the men were 162.5 cm, 51.7 kg, 23.7 cm, and 19.6 kg/m2, respectively. The prevalence of undernutrition (chronic energy deficiency [CED]) based on BMI was 26.2%; 3.3%, 3.9%, and 19.0% had grades III, II, and I CED, respectively. According to MUAC cutoff points, the prevalence of undernutrition was 33.7%.

Conclusions. The level of undernutrition among adult Santal males was high. Appropriate nutritional intervention programs should be implemented immediately.


Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: December 1, 2006

More about this publication?
  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106

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