Lifestyle Behaviour among Undergraduate Medical Students in Tamil Nadu: A Cross- sectional Study LC01-LC04
1041 (Old No 525/2 ), Periyar Evr High Road, Arumbakkam, Chennai-600106, Tamil Nadu, India.
Introduction: Lifestyle related behavioural risk factors such as physical inactivity and nutrition transition like increased consumption of high-fat and low-fiber diet are found to be risk factors for Non Communicable Diseases (NCD) worldwide. Medical students are susceptible to poor eating habits, physical inactivity, lack of sleep or acquisition of new habits, such as smoking and alcohol. They have been shown to exhibit early risk factors for chronic diseases. Hence, it is essential to assess the lifestyle behaviour among medical students as they are future health care providers.
Aim: To assess the lifestyle behaviour among the undergraduate medical students and to compare lifestyle behavioural factors between gender.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 200 undergraduate medical students, selected by using random sampling method from first year to final year of a government medical college in Chennai, Tamil Nadu from June to August 2018. Self-administered questionnaire was used to collect data regarding socio-demographic profile and lifestyle behaviours such as dietary pattern, physical activity, sedentary behaviour, sleep duration, smoking and alcohol consumption. Descriptive statistics for qualitative data and chi square test to test the proportions were used.
Results: A total of 200 students participated in the study. The mean age of the study participants was 20.2 years with a standard deviation of 1.34. Out of the 200 study participants, 132 (66%) were females and 68 (34%) were males. Skipping of meals was seen in 54% students. Vegetables and fruits intake ≤3 times/week were found in 26% and 63% students respectively. Smoking was observed in 3% and alcohol intake in 7.5% students. Lack of exercise was noted in 46%. Television viewing/mobile usage for >4 hours per day was observed in 31% students. Sleep duration of <6 hours/day was noted in 11%. Frequent carbonated drinks consumption (>3 times/ week) was significantly higher in males (14.7%) as compared to females (5.3%). Inadequate exercise was significantly higher in females.
Conclusion: Behavioural risk factors such as unhealthy diet, irregular eating habits, and physical inactivity were prevalent among the medical undergraduate students.