Assessment of Hemoglobin Level in Relation to Dietary Habits among Adolescent Girls
Background: Adolescence is considered as a period of increased demand of physiological needs including macro and micro nutrients. The requirement of some minerals as such iron and zinc are of top important elements involved in the physical and mental growth and development of adolescents. Low intake of iron rich food and excessive blood loss in menstruation are main reasons of iron deficiency anaemia in adolescent girls. Objective: a) To calculate the haemoglobin Hb level of adolescent girls in relation to their dietary habits. b) To compare Hb level in early and late adolescent girls. Study Design: Cross-sectional descriptive study. Settings: Three schools and two colleges of Shahdara region Lahore Pakistan. Duration: Six months from April to October 2017. Methodology: Cross-sectional descriptive study in which 262 adolescent girls were selected by stratified random sampling. The data was collected through food frequency questionnaire. Chi square test was used to find the association between food intake frequency and Hb level. Results: From sample of 262 adolescents 31.2% girls have BMI less than 5TH percentile and 27.6% were found obese.31.2 adolescents were found anemic. Association was found between Hb level and intake of meat, beef, beef liver, legumes, nuts, black beans, dark chocolates, green vegetables, fruits, chapatti and iron supplements. Conclusion: The results identified the decrease intake of potential nutrients, low level of income, less education level of mothers and large number of family contributing to anemia in adolescent girls.