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Double Burden of Underweight and Overweight: The Example of Bangladesh

  • Mohammad Enamul Hoque
Living reference work entry

Abstract

Many low- to middle-income countries (LMICs) in the world are presently facing an epidemiological paradox, namely, a double burden of underweight and overweight, with the prevalence of both underweight and overweight simultaneously. Such double burden of malnutrition in many of these countries is a result of the rapid increase in the prevalence of an overweight burden while an underweight burden continues to persist. Considering the increasing overweight and persistent underweight found in many developing countries, a nutritional transition is going on in the LMICs, especially in countries of the Indian subcontinent including Bangladesh.

A rising trend of prevalence of overweight both in urban and rural areas among the population in Bangladesh was observed. The prevalence of overweight exceeded that of underweight in 2014. A higher average annual rate of reduction of overweight was found among the wealthy, highly educated, and urban women, while a higher average annual rate of increase was found among the poor, uneducated, and rural women. In addition, a large variation between rural and urban areas was observed in the prevalence of overweight among children and adults in Bangladesh. The overweight children and adults were mainly from urban areas.

The presence of a double burden of underweight and overweight in adult males and females was observed in Bangladesh. However, the prevalence of overweight has increased significantly during the last three decades both in rural and urban areas. Reasons for the increase in the overweight prevalence may be attributable to current economic development in the country. Future research is needed to determine the driving force of the higher growth rates of overweight and to work out the reasons for the rapid increase of the overweight burden among the poor, uneducated, and rural people. As the burden of overweight is predicted to increase in the future, it is also important to estimate the future economic burden attributable to the overweight burden in Bangladesh.

Keywords

Nutritional transition Underweight Overweight Low- to middle-income countries Bangladesh 

List of Abbreviations

AARR

Average annual rate of reduction

ARRI

Aaverage annual rate of increase

BMI

Body mass index

CVD

Cardiovascular disease

DALY

Disability-adjusted life years

GDP

Gross domestic product

HNPSDP

Health, Nutrition and Population Sector Development Program

LMICs

Low- to middle-income countries

NGOs

Non-governmental organizations

OOP

Out of pocket

THCE

Total health-care expenditure

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Maternal, Sexual and Reproductive Health Unit, The Nossal Institute for Global Health, Melbourne School of Population and Global HealthThe University of MelbourneMelbourneAustralia

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