Effect of obesity on asthma among adult Indian women

Mishra, Vinod K.
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Honolulu: East-West Center
Both obesity and asthma are on the rise worldwide. This paper examines the association between obesity and asthma prevalence in adult women in India. Information on 82,464 non-pregnant, ever-married women age 15-49, included in India's 1998-99 National Family Health Survey was analyzed. Obese women were about twice as likely as those with a normal BMI to report suffering from asthma. The association between obesity and asthma remained strong and statistically significant even when the effects of other selected risk factors and potential confounders were controlled. Overweight women also reported significantly higher adjusted asthma prevalence than those with a normal BMI. Results hold in separate analysis for younger and older women. Prospective epidemiological studies, with better measures of overweight conditions and clinical measures of asthma, are needed in developing country settings to validate this relationship and to establish causality.
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