Evaluering av kostholdet blant saharawiske flyktninger i Algerie: Kartlegging av kostholdets kvalitet samt bruk av tobakk og alkohol
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Background: The prevalence of overweight and obesity in the world is increasing, particularly among people living in developing countries. This trend has also been found among refugees living in refugee camps in Algeria. Overweight and obesity are risk factors associated with development of non-communicable diseases. Sedentary lifestyle, an unhealthy diet and consumption of alcohol and tobacco can contribute to this. Objective: The main objective for this thesis was to investigate the quality of the diet and use of alcohol and tobacco among women and men over 18 years living in refugee camps in Algeria. Methods: The sample consisted of 355 participants, 180 women and 175 men. The dietary intake was assessed using 24 hour recall. Food and beverages where more than 15 grams were consumed were grouped in 14 different food groups. Dietary Diversity Score (DDS) was calculated on the basis of consumption of the number of food groups eaten the day before the survey was conducted. The use of tobacco and alcohol were assessed through a questionnaire. In addition, anthropometric measurements of weight and height were measured and BMI was calculated. Results: Mean (SD) DDS for the total sample was 6.1 ± 1.5. Most of the refugees had eaten cereals and foods made from grain (99%) and tea, coffee, sugary foods and beverages (96%). Other vegetables, oil and fats, local goat- and camel milk, vitamin A-rich fruit and vegetables, eggs and fortified foods were eaten by 72%, 65%, 22%, 21%, 11% and 10.5% of the refugees respectively. Fortified foods were the only food group where the intake was significantly different between women and men, respectively 17% and 3.4%. Only men reported use of alcohol and tobacco, respectively 1.9% and 31%. Median (P25-P75) cigarettes and tobacco pipes smoked per week was 140 (63-210). The women had a significantly higher mean (SD) BMI compared to the men, respectively 27.6 ± 5.7, corresponding to overweight and 22.4 ± 4.2. Conclusion: The findings suggest that the refugees have a medium varied diet with a high consumption of grains, cereals, sugary foods and beverages and oils and fats as well as a low consumption of fruit and vegetables. These food items are associated with an increased risk of overweight and obesity and development of non-communicable diseases. Further studies should investigate the total energy intake among the refugees. Interventions should be done in order to improve the diet and health condition of the refugees.
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