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Tuesday, August 03, 2021

Adolescents in India have high level of exposure to risk factors for developing non-communicable diseases: Survey

Adolescents from urban areas had a higher proportion of risk factors than those from rural areas. Only two-thirds reported being imparted health education on NCD risk factors in their schools and colleges, and lower proportions said they saw any health promotion material displayed, according to the survey findings

By: Express News Service | Pune |
June 30, 2021 11:08:35 pm
Adolescents (10-19) constitute 21 per cent of India's population, making it the largest such population in the world (1.5 billion). This study offers national evidence for revisiting and framing appropriate policies, strategies for prevention and control of NCDs in younger age groups.

One in every 10 adolescents in India had experimented with smoke or smokeless forms of tobacco, one-fourth were insufficiently physically active, 6.2 per cent adolescents were overweight and nearly half of them consumed salted and fried Indian savouries at least once a week, according to findings from the National Non-Communicable Disease Monitoring Survey of India.

A comprehensive status of risk factors for NCDs among Indian adolescents aged 15-17 years in India by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and National Centre for Disease Informatics and Research (NCDIR) was published in BMJ Open.

Titled `Baseline risk factor prevalence among adolescents aged 15-17 years: findings from National Non Communicable Disease Monitoring Survey of India’, the community-based national cross sectional survey was conducted during 2017-18. Overall, 1,402 households and 1,531 adolescents participated in the survey.

The BMJ Open, an open-access journal, has published the multicentric, pan-India survey results in adolescents aged 15 to 17 years as part of the national non-communicable disease (NCD) targets and indicators framework to be achieved by 2025. This evidence on NCD risk factors and school-based health promotion activities is crucial to address the future burden of NCDs, said Dr Prashant Mathur, director of NCDIR.

Adolescents from urban areas had a higher proportion of risk factors than those from rural areas. Only two-thirds reported being imparted health education on NCD risk factors in their schools and colleges, and lower proportions said they saw any health promotion material displayed, according to the survey findings

Adolescents (10-19) constitute 21 per cent of India’s population, making it the largest such population in the world (1.5 billion). This study offers national evidence for revisiting and framing appropriate policies, strategies for prevention and control of NCDs in younger age groups.

Dr Prashant Mathur, lead investigator of the survey, said, “The published result on adolescents fills the national-level data gaps for this vulnerable age group, helps to assess India’s progress towards the set NCD targets for 2025 and gives new impetus to focus on this age group. India needs to focus on strengthening existing policies, plan more effective risk reduction strategies and health promotion programmes specific to adolescents towards a healthy adulthood.”

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