Co-occurrence of Overweight/Obesity and Anaemia: Evidence from a Nationally Representative Survey of India

Shalem Balla, Manali Swargiary, Mayanka Ambade


Anaemia and overweight/obese are simultaneous concerns of many countries around the globe. We analysed both men and women samples from the 2005–2006, 2015-2016 and 2019-21 National Family and Health Surveys, India. Bi-variate analyses were performed to see the level of co-occurrence of anaemia and overweight/obese across the states of India. Multivariate logistic regression models were used to establish associations between household and individual characteristics, dietary intake score and co-occurrence of anaemia-OWOB (overweight and obese). Alongside, spatial analysis were conducted to detect the geographical clustering of the co-occurring anaemia-OWOB. India sees an increase in the co-occurrence of anaemia among male and female population from 1.1 per cent and 5.8 per cent in 2004-05 to 3.2 per cent and 12.6 per cent respectively in 2019-21.  A number of socio-demographic factors, namely age, gender, type of residence, wealth index, dietary intake score, as well as time, among others correlate with the incidence of co-occurring anaemia-OWOB. The districts in India presents a picture of neighbourhood influence, with high concentration of co-occurring anaemia-OWOB in parts of Southern and Northern region. Combining knowledge on dietary intake and food-fortification/nutritional policies with affordable and accessible nutritional food focusing on adults may contribute consequentially in avoiding the growing public health concern in India.

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