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Soft drink consumption and overweight/obesity among Nigerian adolescents

Authors:

Victor O. Ansa ,

Department of Medicine, University of Calabar, PMB 1115, Calabar, CRS, NG
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Maxwell U. Anah,

Department of Paediatrics, University of Calabar, PMB 1115, Calabar, CRS, NG
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Wilfred O. Ndifon

Department of Community Medicine, University of Calabar, PMB 1115, Calabar, CRS, NG
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Abstract

Background: Over consumption of soft drinks is becoming noticeable in Nigeria especially among adolescents. This study is aimed at assessing the magnitude of soft drink consumption in a cross section of adolescents in Nigeria and determining its association with obesity and overweight.

Methods: The subjects comprised one thousand (1000) secondary school students aged 10–20 years selected by stratified random sampling from two schools.

A self administered questionnaire was used to obtain demographic data as well as data on the amount and frequency of consumption of soft drinks per day, physical activity and time spent watching television a day.

Anthropometric measurements of each subject were taken using standard methods and body mass index was calculated using International Obesity Task Force criteria.

Results: Nearly all (97.2%) subjects consumed atleast one bottle (350 ml) of soft drink a day. No significant difference in the average daily consumption was found between male and female subjects. The prevalence rates of obesity and overweight were 1.7% and 6.8%, respectively. However, no statistically significant association was found between the amount of soft drinks consumed and obesity/overweight.

The presence of a soft drinks vending shop in the school did not influence consumption.

Conclusion: Soft drink consumption is on the increase in Nigeria. A clear association could not be demonstrated between soft drink consumption and obesity/overweight in this study. Health education programmes targeted at adolescents and their parents are advocated. Policies that regulate the advertisement of soft drinks and encourage physical activity should be formulated and implemented.

How to Cite: Ansa VO, Anah MU, Ndifon WO. Soft drink consumption and overweight/obesity among Nigerian adolescents. Global Heart. 2008;3(4):191–6. DOI: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.cvdpc.2008.08.003
Published on 01 Dec 2008.

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