Body mass index and nutritional status of the Bayash Roma from eastern Croatia

Zajc, Matea and Smolej Narančić, Nina and Škarić-Jurić, Tatjana and Miličić, Jasna and Barbalić, Maja and Meljanac Salopek, Kristina and Martinović Klarić, Irena and Janićijević, Branka (2006) Body mass index and nutritional status of the Bayash Roma from eastern Croatia. Collegium Antropologicum, 30 (4). pp. 783-787. ISSN 0350-6134

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This study examines anthropometrically assessed nutritional status of the Bayash, the Roma population from the eastern Croatian region of Baranya, and compares it to the non-Roma general population of eastern Croatia. The analysis of nutritional status and diets is a segment of multidisciplinary anthropological and epidemiological survey of the Roma minority population in Croatia began in 2005. The Bayash are an ethnic group that arrived to Croatia from Romania most likely in the 19th century and speaks a distinct archaic dialect of the Romanian language. The Roma population of Baranya approximates 1, 000 according to the 2001 census. The Bayash sample comprised 227 adults aged 18-65 yrs. The women fall below the Croatian 10th percentile for stature and men track about the 10th percentile. Both sexes approximate the 25th percentile for body weight. Despite their diminutive size, the Bayash appear to have adequate nutritional status until the age of 35 yrs after which their average BMI exceeds the value of 25 kg/m2 and falls in the overweight category. However, 8% of Bayash are underweight (BMI<18.5) in contrast to 1% of the majority population in the region. Underweight rates are especially high in women (11%) compared to men (4%). The prevalence of overweight (BMI 25.0 to 29.9) of 30% is considerably lower than in the majority population (42%) while the prevalence of obesity (BMI>or=30.0) of 23% is approximately equal. Overall unsatisfactory nutritional status of the Bayash merits attention. It appears to be the product of unhealthy dietary habits and their socio-economic deprivation that resulted from their poor education and extremely high unemployment.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Language: English.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Roma minority, Bayash, nutritional status, BMI, Croatia
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Depositing User: Karolina
Date Deposited: 30 Dec 2016 13:32
Last Modified: 30 Dec 2016 13:32

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