Urbanization and the Nutrition Transition in Cebu, Philippines

Darren L. Dahly, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

My goal is to use a scale measure of urbanicity based on demographic and modernization characteristics to describe urbanization and its effects on obesity risk in a large, Philippine, metropolitan area. Data are from the Cebu Longitudinal Health and Nutrition Survey, which has been following study participants since their birth in 1983. In 2002, under and normal weight (BMI≤25) young adults were evenly distributed across tertiles of the urbanicity scale, while overweight (BMI>25) study participants were much less likely to live in the most rural tertile of urbanicity (chi square p=0.001). This distribution was much more pronounced in young adult males. Furthermore, logistic regression revealed a positive, linear relationship between the continuous urbanicity scale (range 7-60) and obesity risk in young adult males, even after controlling for current education and SES [OR 1.02, p=0.017; OR 1.84 for a 30 point change in urbanicity]. This relationship was not seen in females.

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Presented in Session 65: Population and the Nutritional Transition