Obesity and its health impact in Africa: a systematic review.
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ADEBOYE, B., BERMANO, G. and ROLLAND, C., 2012. Obesity and its health impact in Africa: a systematic review. Cardiovascular Journal of Africa, 23 (9), pp. 512-521.
Obesity and its association with co-morbidities in Africa are on the rise. This systematic review examines evidence of obesity and its association with co-morbidities within the African continent. Comparative studies conducted in Africa on adults 17 years and older with mean body mass index (BMI) ≥ 28 kg/m2 were included. Five electronic databases were searched. Surveys, case–control and cohort studies from January 2000 to July 2010 were evaluated. Of 720 potentially relevant articles, 10 met the inclusion criteria. Prevalence of obesity was higher in urban than rural subjects with significant increases in obesity rates among women. Inflammatory marker levels were significantly elevated among Africans compared with Caucasians. The co-relationship between obesity and chronic diseases was also highlighted. This systematic review demonstrates that while obesity remains an area of significant public health importance to Africans, particularly in urban areas, there is little evidence of proper diagnosis, treatment and/or prevention.