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Research Paper Open Access
Background: In recent decades, diets have changed rapidly in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) because the Western diet is replacing the traditional Arabic diet. This has resulted in an alarming increase in the number of overweight and obese children and adolescents in KSA. It is well documented that lifestyle and faulty eating habits are strongly associated with the development of obesity. Aim of the study: This research studied the prevalence of overweight and obesity among selected adolescents and early adults and the relationship of BMI to physical activity, snacking and meal skipping pattern. Materials and methods: In 2012, a cross-sectional study was conducted among 1000 female adolescents and early adults (19-24 years old) who were selected by random sampling from four randomly sampled colleges from the University of Hail KSA. The BMI was assessed using height and weight measurements. Dietary habits were evaluated by a pre validated questionnaire which included food frequency, snacking and meal skipping pattern questions. Results: The results of the study revealed that a majority of the subjects belonged to the normal weight category (50 %), followed by overweight (28 %), underweight (12 %) and obese (10 %) category. Incidence of overweight or obesity was not related to physical activity, number of snacks and meal skipping habits of the subjects. A significantly higher percentage of underweight or normal weight subjects involved in snacking when compared to obese subjects. Practical implications: In summary, increased weight status of Saudi adolescents and early adults was not significantly related to physical activity, frequency of snacking and meal skipping patterns. This indicates the importance of rapid promotion of including judicious food choices in the main diets and snacks of Saudi Arabian adolescents.
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Author(s): Vedavalli Sachithananthan Wedad Flyyh Mtlk Al Rashedi
Adolescents, Snacking, Food frequency, Antibacterial, Antioxidant, Antioxidants, Ethnobotanical devices, Ethnobotany Ethnomedicinal plants, Ethnomedicine, Gingee hills, Herbal medicine, Hillocks, Medicinal plants, Nigella sativa, Phytochemical Phytochemicals, Piper guineense, Plasmodium falciparum, Rheumatoid arthritis, Traditional, Traditional knowledge, Tribes