Physical activity and diabetes in the South-Asian population in OsloTrine Lauritzen , Gerd Holmboe-Ottesen (tutor). Marz 2005
Background: Oslo is the city in Norway with the largest population of immigrants from from the South-Asian countries. The prevalence of selfreported diabetes in this group is high (11%) compared to norwegians (2,6%) and immigrants from western countries, and the actual prevalence is even higher. My project comprises investigation of the patterns of physical activity in the South-Asians in relation to better understanding of the high diabetes prevalence, because it is a well-known fact that inactivity and obesity is related to diabetes.
Materials and methods: In 2000-2001, a total of 18770 individuals, 45,9% of those invited, participated in the Oslo Health Study. 508 originated from South Asia (Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka), in this cross-sectional survey, with 5 age cohorts (30-76 years). Particpants received a postal invitation with a questionnaire and thereafter attended a physical examination with several measurements and blood sample. Additional questionnaires were handed out, but my analysis are based on the first one (Main qustoinnaire). The statistical program SPSS was used for the analysis.
Results: I have found that the South Asians are less physically active than the norwegians. 55% of the men and 50% of the women were doing light exercise less than one hour per week or not at all (norwegians 17% men and 15% women). I also found that the women were less active than the men. I made an index for physical activity from 1-10. 1-2 means inactive, 3-4 some active and so on. Men scored mean 3,8 and women 3,6 (norwegians total mean was 5,8). I have found that low physical activity are related to high hip-waist-ratio in women, and high bloodlglucoses among those without known diabetes. There is no significant differece in physical activity beteween those with selfreported diabetes and those without.
Conclusion: Physically inactivity may very well be one of the reasons why the South Asians in Oslo have a high prevalence of diabetes, and interventions done in the right manner can benefit this group.