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NFHS-5 shows deteriorating health status of adult population in Nagaland

Nagaland News

DIMAPUR, DECEMBER 15: In a major concern, adult men and women in Nagaland are running into the abyss of diseases due to nutritional imbalances, shows the National Family Health Survey-5 2019-20 (NFHS-5). In comparison to the last NFHS-4 carried out in year 2015-16, the nutritional status has only deteriorated.
Take for example the percentage of men who are overweight, that is, those having a Body-Mass Index (BMI) of over 25 is 23.9% now. In other words, almost every fourth adult male in Nagaland has an unhealthy body mass index, is on the path of obesity ~ a path that leads to diabetes, hypertension and other diseases.
The percentage of such males was 13.9% five years ago. In just 5 years, there is a 10% increase in the percentage. The percentage of men with a high waist-to-hip ratio is also a high 29.4%.
On the other hand, the percentage of women with an unhealthy waist-to-hip ratio is a whopping 62%. The waist-to-hip ratio is an indicator of fat distribution and having a high ratio is considered to be a higher risk of heart diseases and diabetes.
On another parameter, nearly as many women have a 25 plus BMI as men, the prevalence of obesity also on similar patterns and worryingly high in both genders. It must be borne in mind that the survey had taken into account people aged 15 years to 49 years for the measurement of these variables.
The effects of these depreciating health indices are already visible. Nearly 12.4% men and 9.3% women in Nagaland have elevated Blood Sugars. Nearly 30% adults (both genders) have mildly, moderately or severely elevated blood pressure.
The prevalence of anemia among women is another cause of concern. Over 33% of women in Nagaland have low levels of hemoglobin, casting a shadow on their physical and mental well being.
The survey is just a mirror of the society and the population and must serve as a beginning for the policy makers in Nagaland to devise their healthcare and outreach activities. Unfortunately awareness about lifestyle diseases, the benefits of a healthy and active life and the nutritional education and balanced meals are still an alien concept to most. In addition, the decrease in physical activity levels, due to the mechanization of activities and chores, has led to a stark change in our people’s lifestyles.
It is time the State healthcare system wakes up and gears itself to put the scores of programmes and schemes into action.
(Page News Service)