General and abdominal obesity in adults living in a rural area in Southern Brazil

Thais Martins-Silva, Christian Loret de Mola, Juliana dos Santos Vaz, Luciana Tovo-Rodrigues

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OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the prevalence of general and abdominal obesity and the concomitant presence of both outcomes and their determinants among adults living in a rural area. METHODS: This cross-sectional, population-based study was carried out in a medium-sized city in the southern region of Brazil. We evaluated three outcomes: general obesity (body mass index ≥ 30 kg/m2), abdominal obesity (waist circumference ≥ 102 cm and ≥ 88 cm in men and women, respectively), and concomitant obesities, classified as: no risk, only one risk factor, and aggregate factors. We performed crude and adjusted Poisson regression analyses for each obesity outcome and multinomial logistic regression for metabolic risk. We considered demographic and socioeconomic characteristics as independent variables. RESULTS: A total of 1,433 individuals were included in the study. Of them, 29.5% presented general obesity and 37.8% presented abdominal obesity. We observed the presence of a risk factor in 15.8% of the sample, while 25.8% presented aggregate factors. The risk of general and abdominal obesity and concomitant outcomes increased significantly with age in both sexes. Richer men were at increased risk for general obesity (PR = 1.7; 95%CI 1.0-2.9), abdominal obesity (PR = 1.8; 95%CI 1.1-2.9), and aggregate factors (OR = 1.9; 95%CI 1.4-5.8). An education level of twelve years or more was a protective factor for women in relation to abdominal obesity (PR = 0.4; 95%CI 0.2-0.8) and aggregate factors (OR = 0.2; 95%CI 0.05-0.7). Rural activity reduced the risk of general obesity (PR = 0.6; 95%CI 0.5-0.8) and aggregate factors (OR = 0.5; 95%CI 0.3-0.8) in women, and the risk of abdominal obesity (PR = 0.6; 95%CI 0.5-0.8) and presence of a risk factor (OR = 0.5; 95%CI 0.3-0.7) in men. Skin color and time lived in rural areas were not statistically associated with the outcomes studied. CONCLUSIONS: We o bserved h igh p revalences o f g eneral a nd a bdominal o besity i n t his population, which is consistent with the values found in urban populations. However, rural activities were a protective factor for obesity outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7s
JournalRevista de Saude Publica
StatePublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Abdominal
  • Adult
  • Body mass index
  • Epidemiology
  • Obesity
  • Obesity
  • Risk factors
  • Rural population
  • Waist circumference


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