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Prevalence of Overweight and Obesity, and Its Associated Factors Among Health-care Workers, Teachers, and Bankers in Arusha City, Tanzania

Authors Zubery D, Kimiywe J, Martin HD

Received 2 October 2020

Accepted for publication 16 December 2020

Published 2 February 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 455—465


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 5

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ming-Hui Zou

Dalahile Zubery,1 Judith Kimiywe,2 Haikael D Martin1

1Department of Food Biotechnology and Nutritional Sciences, School of Life Sciences and Bioengineering, Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology, Arusha, Tanzania; 2Department of Foods, Nutrition and Dietetics, Kenyatta University, Nairobi, Kenya

Correspondence: Dalahile Zubery Tel +255 759 945 149

Background: Tanzania is one of the developing countries experiencing an increasing trend of overweight and obesity among adults. Working adults have been identified as a high-risk group more exposed to the predictors of overweight and obesity than the general population. However, limited studies have been done in this group. This study aimed to identify the prevalence of overweight and obesity and its associated risk factors among health-care workers, teachers, and bankers in Arusha city council.
Subjects and Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among health-care workers, teachers, and bankers. A total of 305 working adults aged 18– 60 years participated in the study. A modified World Health Organization (WHO) STEPwise approach for chronic disease risk factor surveillance was used to collect data about socio-demographic characteristics, lifestyle behaviors, dietary practices and anthropometric measurement. The Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ) was used to collect information about level of physical activities. The anthropometric measurement and level of physical activities were calculated and ranked according to WHO guidelines.
Results: Overall, 68.9% (31.1% overweight and 37.8% obese) of working adults were overweight or obese. Age (adjusted odds ratio [AOR=7.73; 95% CI: 1.93– 30.87]), gender (AOR=2.60; 95% CI: 1.30– 5.21), marital status (AOR=2.47; 95% CI: 1.11– 5.50), years spent with the current institution (AOR=4.59; 95% CI: 1.38– 17.80), using private car or public transport to and from work (AOR=2.43; 95% CI: 1.10– 5.39) and sedentary work (AOR=2.43; 95% CI: 1.04– 5.71), were significant factors associated with overweight or obesity.
Conclusion: The study identified a higher prevalence of overweight and obesity in Tanzania compared with previous studies. The results from this study are useful for the education sector, financial institutions and health sector on designing workplace wellness programs to reduce the burden of overweight and obesity among this working category.

Keywords: overweight, obesity, working adults, associated factors, Arusha

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