Background: Parity is positively associated with body size and other weight related conditions. Predominant breastfeeding has a positive impact on the body mass index during post menopause. Aims and objectives: To study the influence of parity and breastfeeding practices on body mass index (BMI) among post-menopausal women. Method: A community-based study was carried out for 6 months. Total of 140 post-menopausal women from Udupi and Manipal areas in Karnataka were selected. Their anthropometric measurements (height and weight) were taken to derive the body mass index. Gynaecological (menarche age, parity), medical history, breastfeeding practices, personal habits were recorded using a structured questionnaire. Regression and correlation were used as applicable for data analysis using SPSS v16. Results: There were 58.7% of post-menopausal women in the normal BMI class, 29% and 12.3% in grade I and II obese classes. A statistically significant (p < 0.01) negative correlation was observed between body mass index (BMI) and breastfeeding duration. Parity was positively correlated to body mass index (p < 0.01). Majority of the subjects 78.6% had breastfed for more than 12 months. Conclusions: The influence of child bearing practices such as parity, breastfeeding duration on body mass index was significant. With increasing parity and decrease in breastfeeding duration post-menopausal women were at an increased risk of being obese.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Microbiology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases