The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Gender differences in body mass index in rural India are determined by socio-economic factors and lifestyle

Gender differences in body mass index in rural India are determined by socio-economic factors and lifestyle
Gender differences in body mass index in rural India are determined by socio-economic factors and lifestyle
A survey of the nutritional status of women in 6 villages of the Pune district of Maharashtra, India, found young women to have a significantly lower BMI than their male peers. The purpose of this study was to identify social and economic factors associated with this difference in thinness and to explore the behavior in men and women that might underlie these associations. We compared men and women in 90 families in this part of Maharashtra by taking measurements of the height and weight of the married couple of child-bearing age in each family and assessing their social and economic details, fasting practices, and oil consumption. In this agricultural community, women were thinner in joint land-owning families, where the main occupation was farming, than those in nonfarming families. This was not true of men in this type of family. Men in "cash-rich" families had higher BMI than men in families without this characteristic. There was no corresponding difference in women's BMI. We then examined the lifestyles of men and women in a subset of 45 of these families. Women were more likely to work full time in farming than men, to carry the burden of all household chores, to have less sleep, and to eat less food away from home than men. Women fasted more frequently and more strictly than men. Despite identifying significant differences in behavior between men and women in the same household, we did not find a direct link between behavior and BMI. We conclude that being married into a farming family is an important factor in determining the thinness of a woman in rural Maharashtra.
0022-3166
3062-3068
Barker, Mary
374310ad-d308-44af-b6da-515bf5d2d6d2
Chorghade, Ginny
2313ed00-dc62-4576-9f52-95b50b8c42ba
Crozier, Sarah
a9c88016-8f46-4659-954e-4d7af8a49594
Leary, Sam
7e88b432-83de-4de9-b362-da5fd17f4de5
Fall, Caroline
7171a105-34f5-4131-89d7-1aa639893b18
Barker, Mary
374310ad-d308-44af-b6da-515bf5d2d6d2
Chorghade, Ginny
2313ed00-dc62-4576-9f52-95b50b8c42ba
Crozier, Sarah
a9c88016-8f46-4659-954e-4d7af8a49594
Leary, Sam
7e88b432-83de-4de9-b362-da5fd17f4de5
Fall, Caroline
7171a105-34f5-4131-89d7-1aa639893b18

Barker, Mary, Chorghade, Ginny, Crozier, Sarah, Leary, Sam and Fall, Caroline (2006) Gender differences in body mass index in rural India are determined by socio-economic factors and lifestyle. Journal of Nutrition, 136, 3062-3068.

Record type: Article

Abstract

A survey of the nutritional status of women in 6 villages of the Pune district of Maharashtra, India, found young women to have a significantly lower BMI than their male peers. The purpose of this study was to identify social and economic factors associated with this difference in thinness and to explore the behavior in men and women that might underlie these associations. We compared men and women in 90 families in this part of Maharashtra by taking measurements of the height and weight of the married couple of child-bearing age in each family and assessing their social and economic details, fasting practices, and oil consumption. In this agricultural community, women were thinner in joint land-owning families, where the main occupation was farming, than those in nonfarming families. This was not true of men in this type of family. Men in "cash-rich" families had higher BMI than men in families without this characteristic. There was no corresponding difference in women's BMI. We then examined the lifestyles of men and women in a subset of 45 of these families. Women were more likely to work full time in farming than men, to carry the burden of all household chores, to have less sleep, and to eat less food away from home than men. Women fasted more frequently and more strictly than men. Despite identifying significant differences in behavior between men and women in the same household, we did not find a direct link between behavior and BMI. We conclude that being married into a farming family is an important factor in determining the thinness of a woman in rural Maharashtra.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: December 2006

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 60893
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/60893
ISSN: 0022-3166
PURE UUID: cdfdd34b-7be9-4263-bab3-890a31bdcc31
ORCID for Mary Barker: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-2976-0217

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 23 Sep 2008
Last modified: 14 Mar 2019 01:52

Export record

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×