Factors Associated with Body Weight Changes among Nigerian Postgraduate Students at Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA), Malaysia
International students usually experience a change in body weight and eating behaviour after migrating to a host country. The aim of this study is to determine the factors associated with body weight changes among Nigerian postgraduate students at Unversiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA), Malaysia. A prospective study was conducted for six months to determine the association between body weight changes and socio-demographic, eating behavior, physical activity, dietary intake and quality of life. A total of 82 students (76 male and six females) completed a set of self-administered questionnaires, and their weight and height were measured. Descriptive statistic and paired t-test were carried out to analyze the data (IBM SPSS Version 20.0). Multiple linear regression analysis was conducted to determine the factors. Body weight significantly increased by 2.3 ± 0.5 kg after 6 months. Being an art student (β=1.67, p=0.006), being a female (β=-2.68, p=0.009), consuming breakfast once a week (β=5.10, P=<0.001), taking morning tea less than once a month or never at all (β= 3.62, p<0.001), consuming lunch one to three times a month (β=-2.57, p= 0.006), taking afternoon tea two to three days a week (β=2.56, P=0.005), skipping meal sometimes (β=1.22, p= 0.049), taking meal at other food stalls, coffee shops or hawkers’ centers less than once a month or never at all (β=-2.31, p= <0.001) were adjusted significant associated factors for body weight changes. Socio-demography and eating behaviour were found to be the significant predicting factors of body weight changes. This paper concludes that the change in environment has an impact on body weight and eating behaviour of Nigerian students.
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