A study on the knowledge, attitude and practices (KAP) regarding obesity among engineering college students

Jagadeesan M., Prasanna Karthik S., Kannan R., Immaculate Bibiana C., Kanchan N., Siddharthan J., Vinitha M.


Background: Obesity is one of the most prevalent form of malnutrition in both developed and developing countries and affecting both children as well as adults. Obesity is the fifth leading cause of death worldwide. It is also an important risk factor in the natural history of certain chronic non-communicable diseases. Strategies for preventing obesity offer a cost-effective approach in preventing chronic non-communicable diseases. Awareness level is the basic necessity to effect a change in behavior. The objectives of the study were to determine the knowledge, attitude and practices (KAP) regarding obesity among students of an engineering college.

Methods: The study was a descriptive cross sectional type carried out among students of an engineering college in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. The study was carried out on 240 students of the engineering college after obtaining proper informed consent. The KAP parameters were assessed using pretested structured questionnaire and physical examination for anthropometry to measure BMI was done.

Results: 58.3% of the study group were males. It was found that 61% of the participants had normal BMI range and 20% fell above the range of normal BMI (i.e. ≥25) and the remaining were underweight (19%). Among the overweight and obese individuals 54.16% were males and 45.83% were females. 54.16% of the students had knowledge that they were entering into obesity and the rest felt they were normal. 73% had the belief that exercise would help in overcoming obesity. It was found that 70% of them were able to exercise but did not have a regular routine. More alarmingly 89.5% of the students did not take any steps to overcome obesity.

Conclusions: The study provides the information that the participant had good knowledge and attitude regarding obesity but failed in practicing necessary measures to control and prevent it. Health education, frequent monitoring and conducting interventional programs among students would be vital.


Awareness, Body mass index, KAP, Obesity, Overweight

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