Friday, 20 August 2010

Nutritional Status of Orang Asli (Che Wong Tribe) Adults in Krau Wildlife Reserve, Pahang

This is a descriptive study on nutritional status of Orang Asli (Che Wong tribe)
adults in Krau Wildlife Reserve. Twenty-six households, comprising 29 men and
28 women,participated in the study. Dietary diversity was assessed using food
frequency questionnaire with 37 food groups. Weight, height and waist
circumference were measured using standard instruments. The mean age for
men and women was 39.9 ± 17.1 years and 33.7 ± 16.1 years, respectively. Most
(89.5%) of the adults had no formal education and about 89.5% of households
were categorised as poor. There were 13.8% underweight, 72.4% normal, 10.3%
overweight and 3.3% obese men. For women, 25.0%, 46.4%, and 28.6% were
underweight, normal and overweight, respectively. While none of the men had
at-risk waist circumference (men >90 cm), about 21.4% of women had waist
circumference of >80 cm. The mean dietary diversity score was 9.47 ± 4.15 with
men (9.48 ± 3.70) and women (9.46 ± 4.63) having similar scores. There was a
significant correlation between waist circumference and household income
(r=0.36, p<0.01); however, the association was only significant in women (r=0.50,
p<0.01). Although under-nutrition still prevails, there are emerging cases of
overweight and obesity in this rural Orang Asli community undergoing nutrition
transition especially among the females.

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